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Album Review

Duchess of Saigon – “Duchess of Saigon” – [S-S Records]

Thurston Hunger   1/27/2011   12-inch, A Library

Ah the vaults of S-S, where genius lies sleeping on crumply
cassettes. Thus this 2005 recording now out six years later,
with the two original band members sequestered in a witness
protection program or leading productive lives or who knows?
Bummer, as I think I’m in love with the drummer. She’s
rambunctious and marches to her own beat, naturally. But she’s
also prone to shouting out kind of dorky, kind of cool
background vocals. Her name is Mary. Tell her to make more
music, and you might as well say the same to guitarist
Richard Haley. He’s got a blarey tone, and often chops
off chords for percussive blows. A nice sense for garage
swagger riffs, and his vocals are the talky type with a
bemused tone, like he wonders whether he wrote the lyrics.
Kind of like the old band King Kong, a quizzical yet droll
delivery. This is a 45 rpm 12″, so hold on to your hats.
It’s jam packed with quick little nuggets, if you like one
you’ll probably like them all. And go ahead and add your
own doo woops and bum-bum-de-bum-bum background vocals as
you listen. The more the merrier, and the more Mary the
better! -Thurston Hunger

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