Alex Chilton

Black List

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This album continues to successfully mine the retro-music lodestone found in High Priest, Feudalist Tarts, and similar releases of this period. Half the songs here are blues numbers of differing stripes: "Jailbait" is an irresistibly rocking song featuring prominent organ and baritone saxophone that has humorous, worldly lyrics in praise of the speaker's underaged sweetie; "Baby Baby Baby" is a fine down-and-dirty slow-tempo selection with rudimentary verses; Furry Lewis' "I Will Turn Your Money Green" is an enjoyably lazy, loping number. Other styles are showcased as well. The Chilton original "Guantanamerika" is a smooth, almost jazz-lounge-oriented ditty with ironic lyrics. A cover of "Nice and Easy Does It" reveals a fine song given as a sophisticated crooner's tune. There's also a bouncy, faithful cover of the 1960s surf-style car classic "Little GTO," on which Chilton plays all the instruments and sings all the vocals. Sound quality is top-notch. Performances are first-rate, with as always excellent solo work from guitarist Chilton and saxophonist Jim Spake; Chilton's singing is a bit strained on the high notes on "Little GTO," but is otherwise fine. This excellent release is strongly recommended.

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