Spindrift

The Legend of God's Gun

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Spindrift is the number one psychedelic spaghetti western band: they're also the only psychedelic spaghetti western band, but that's not a band thing. The unique sound Spindrift bandleader Kirkpatric Thomas has put together combines the spooky strains of Ennio Morricone's early work with west coast '60s psychedelia to create music that's at once familiar and alien. In 2006, while the band was still in its formative stages, Thomas and Spindrift collaborated with director Mike Bruce on The Legend of God's Gun, a film based on the soundtrack album the band had already recorded. Thomas starred in the film and collaborated on the screenplay for a work that's half homage to the movies of Sergio Leone and half promotional music video for the band. The film was finally shown, at least at Spindrift gigs and on DVD in 2009, hence this soundtrack recording is finally getting national release. (It was formerly available mostly at Spindrift gigs.) Musically The Legend of God's Gun is a continuation (actually a prequel) to the work Thomas and the band did on The West. It opens with "In the Beginning," a spoken word interlude which may or may not add to the film, but sounds pretty hokey on CD. "Titoli" is the first musical track; a twangy, dissonant waltz that shows off Thomas' guitar prowess in his chosen field, and the solid drumming of Dan Allaire. "The Legend of God's Gun" is a dark funeral tune with moaning wordless harmonies, but again with a serious spoken word voice-over that may work better on film. "Conversation with a Gun" was written in the process of making the film, the soundtrack's one "song," but again a bit heavy-handed. Thomas recites the lyric to his gun but it doesn't work here as drama; perhaps its unintentional humor comes across better on film or in live performance. The ten remaining tracks are all moody, dark themes that work well as gothic mood music. "Preacher's Theme" balances eerie vocals, acoustic guitar, and dramatic percussion accents, "Speak to the Wind" is a slow, twang-heavy tune that brings to mind the Shadows' instrumental hit "Apache," Bach's "Organ Fugue in Dm, Opus 42" starts traditionally before Thomas joins in on clanging electric guitar. "Burn the Church" is a dissonant guitar workout, "Greenhorn's Introduction" is another waltz, this time with sparse electric guitar and subtle bass. "Girlz, Booze, and Gunz" starts slow and builds to a surfadelic climax, the brief, spacy distorted guitar of "Blessing the Bullets" segues into the growling funk of "The Scorpion's Venom" before concluding with "Indian Run" a metallic piece based on a pow wow beat that may insult some Native Americans. It's one of he album's most energetic tracks. Quentin Tarantino used the tune in his film Hell Ride.

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