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Album Review

Orcutt, Bill – “A King Or Something” – [Palilalia]

abacus   4/17/2012   7-inch, A Library

More solo guitar confessionals from ex-Harry Pussy guitarist Bill Orcutt. Here we get more layers to his cracked, cantankerous deconstruction of broken blues phrasings, so gut-wrenchingly personal, it can only be described as spiritual. Side A seems all in all a little atypical, beginning in a shimmering haze, with a rickety lullaby accompanied by his wistful wails and then on Crossroads we’re hit with an unaccompanied vocal track of a nonsense tongue twister, compulsively repeated for almost 2 mins. Side A closes with a rendition of Michael Jackson’s (see cover) Man in the Mirror, done in powerful blues stomp fashion, wrapping up a somewhat more optimistic face. On Side B we sink briefly back into more sorrowful, dejected territory, tangentially contemplating every facet of regretful memories before closing with another blues ballad, this time with a little more twang, like a persistent desert wanderer. There are only 200 copies of this limited release from his Euro tour last year, so we can thank Bill himself for the donation.

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