Commander Cody

King of the Honky Tonks

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Issued by the Italian Akarma label, this Commander Cody date is a far cry from the Lost Planet Airmen days of yore, but this is no band of slouches, either. That said, master vocalist Billy C. Farlow is in the band singing and laying harmonica, as is fiddle boss Carlos Reyes. Done on the cheap, this is a studio date with plenty of piss and vinegar, ragged country, sleazy R&B, and greasy rock & roll. These proceedings are raw, for the most part. It doesn't sound like a lot of rehearsals or many alternate takes were required. Farlow's voice is even lower -- if you can believe it -- and George Frayne's writing hasn't progressed much (and it didn't need to). The standouts here are the covers of "Good Morning Judge" and Merle Haggard's "Working Man's Blues," but Frayne's "King of the Honky Tonks" and "Keys to My Cadillac" shine, too.

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