Thursday, October 29, 2009

Album Review-Michael Hurtt & his Haunted Hearts Come Back To Louisiana

This review is part of the "Over Flow" Review Series. For various reasons these past reviews were not published anywhere else. I am tagging them as "Overflow Reviews" and may add some extra information before or after if needed but will keep the ratings and reviews just as I originally wrote them. Enjoy:

Michael Hurtt and his Haunted Hearts
Come Back To Louisiana
*** and 1/2

Ah the spicy gumbo that is Nawlin’s music, constantly impressing with range and depth.   Today’s chefs adding to the flavor are Michael Hurtt and his Haunted Hearts bringing back the often forgotten country music of the town.  These troubadours pluck and strum their way through some bayou backwater hillybilly lost classics an sprinkle in country fried chicken gristle originals leaving the listener an earful of goodness.  The title song and opener comes from Rockabilly Hall of Famer Jay Chevalier and the back-porch-moonshine keeps a’flowin’ as the Haunted Hearts stroll through their original “I Dreamed By Starlight”, pick with the quickness on Ford Nix’s “Ain’t No Sign I Wouldn’t If I Could”, an amp up the friskiness on Tommy Odom’s “She Won’t Turn Over For Me”.  The electric playing craftily increases as the album progresses, culminating with the original rockabilly of “Hey Little Tornado”. 

Come Back to Louisiana would ring truest crackling over a turntable in a dusty old juke joint or echoing off a balcony somewhere in the Faubourg Marigny.  While the title of the newest bonus single “Lonely Mardi Gras” may throw you for a loop, the tune should toss revelers into finding a dance partner and strutting down St Charles Ave, shimmying and shaking their blues away.

More after the Jump...
I love me NOLA, with all of me big dumb heart. (End bad Irish Accent)
There will be multiple posts about this in the future, so I won't spend too much time here on it, but the city is beyond equals.   It is it's own wild hairy unkept beast of a city, prowling back alleys with empty whiskey bottles and howling at the moon....but I am getting carried away....

Way back on one of my many trips to the Crescent City I went to the Circle Bar

and caught a fired up Rockabilly band that was seemed to be fueled by a mix of Miller High Life, Heroin and Sin.  They were all over the place and rambling into the dawn, as we did.  It was a hoot, so much so that I am completly spacing on the name...oh well, it was my first exposure to country music's influence on the city...but then when I thought about music is everywhere in Nawlin's.  From Zydeco to the Blues country is there, from Jazz to Rock, country is everywhere, so in the gumbo that is the city it fits right in.  

This album by Michael Hurtt and his Haunted Hearts is a gem of pure NOLA country.  Obviously not the shit that gets passed off as on "Country" radio channels today or CMT or any of that mess, I mean real hot porch picking and playing.  Slices of some of rock-a-billies best show up on this with excellent lyrical phrases and intense pickin'.  If you are a fan of those kin of tunes it is worth tracking down.  It can be a bit hard to do though, so I got some Youtube clips to tide you over until you end up in a saloon down south and see these ramblers for yerself.
The Band and the Man:

 The same show with Jay Chevalier:

And the Original Ford Nix Tune that Michael Hurtt Covers, it is a gem:

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