Thursday, April 16, 2015


This article originally appeared in the 4.16.15 issue of Metroland.


The Lustre Kings

Wild Boar Records

            This is the Lustre Kings’ fifth album and it’s a whopper.  The first thing that will hit you is the sound; big, luscious and right.  Liam Hogg’s drums punch, Chops’ bass is bottomless.  Wow.  Hats off to producers Cliff Lyons and Sten Isachson for crafting a big-league record.

            Like their soulmates, the late, lamented Morells, the Kings dig deep to find swinging obscurities that are a couple steps to the left of normal, and then serve them up with a wink and a spit-shine.  The trio of “It Ain’t Right” (Gordon Terry), “Wrong Wrong Wrong” (John Lilly) and “Can’t Find The Door Knob” (Jimmy and Johnny) left me dizzy from giggling.  Go Green is a great rockabilly record doubling as a master’s thesis on Americana weirdness.  That you can dance to.

            You can hear the smile in Mark Gamsjager’s voice, kind of a Dave Edmunds-y high and lonesome wail.  Kevin Maul’s expert steel guitar touches add a bit of Texas, and takes everything higher and lonesomer.  And then there’s Mother Judge, who I could listen to all the day and all of the night.  Her guest vocals on the Brill Building nugget “Fallin’” might be the best thing you’ll hear all year.  She’s the highest and lonesomest of them all.

            Maul’s featured on the Santo and Johnny classic “Sleepwalk”, which is drop dead gorgeous, and guest guitarist Bobby Henrie blows up the room with some killer shredding.  Go Green is an adventure, and a fun one, from start to finish.


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