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This Belgian five piece outfit takes us back to a time when country music drew heavily on the myth of the Old West – the opening twangy guitar instrumental is a little reminiscent of The Ramrods’ early 60s hit version of ‘Ghost Riders In The Sky’, and employs strings providing a sound little heard since that era. There is also a strong mariachi band influence (as there is also on several other tracks). The rich vocals of band-leader Bart Hendrickx hark back to a time when singers were deep-voiced, slow and deliberate – think Johnny Cash, Jimmy Dean, Marty Robbins, and their ilk. Then again, throw in a few elements of the folk revival, as imagined by the commercial music companies of the early 60s and perhaps in recognition of Ned Sublette’s pet theory of Cuban music as the fount of much western popular music, there is the spooky rhumba ‘Incantation’, and as a nod to contemporary tastes maybe, a closing ‘Forever Gone’ that certainly falls into the singer/ songwriter “Americana” bag. Eleven of the twelve songs are originals, the exception being a quiet (and quietly impressive) cover of Hank Williams’ folky ‘ Alone & Forsaken’. This album should really come with an LP sized sleeve sporting a picture of a gunfighter in action, but instead we get a quack doc’s cure-all potion. That does the job well enough, I guess.
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