Duane Eddy

Compact Command Performances

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Some of these great old instrumentals sound like they were recorded with the assistance of a 300-lb.cast-iron water tank in Duane Eddy's backyard in suburban Phoenix (later moved across the street and covered with a tarp). Performances is a veritable cauldron of twangy guitar and other fine American inventions that clearly go undertasted (or underremembered) in a world spun far from its E-chord center. These emeralds are pure expectorating sax and boy-whoop, often memorialized as film tags ("Because They're Young," "Pepe"), or rivaling the hand of power-chord god Link Wray as three-stroke pickin' anthems ("Rebel-'Rouser," "Ramrod," "Moovin' 'N Groovin'"). Always pristine, if primitive. One of the countless great things about Duane is his genius luck for collaboration and broad aesthetic: produced by Duane's great lifelong pals Lee Hazlewood and Lester Sill, Performances is a sheer peak-career showcase, released as a departure-genre record with Motown (who had released the Have Twangy Guitar -- Will Travel and $100,000,000 Worth of Twang compilations in 1960).

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