Heavy Trash

Noir!

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Heavy Trash, the rip-roaring trashabilly duo of Matt Verta-Ray and Jon Spencer, released three hip-shaking, Hully Gully-inspiring albums between 2005 and 2009. Adding to their meager output is a collection of outtakes, unreleased tracks, experiments, and general fooling around titled Noir! Released by the Bronze Rat label on vinyl in 2015 with a truly slick-looking cover, the 11 tracks within run the gamut from songs that probably should have made the cut on a regular album to songs that probably could have stayed in the duo's collective sock drawer forever. Heading up the first category are the downright nasty rocker "Wet Book," the hillbilly bopper "Back Off," and their cover of Johnny Cash's "Leave That Junk Alone," which sounds like it was written just for them. Maybe the highlight of the whole thing is when Spencer shows off his smart snake oil salesman pose on the slow-burning "Jibber Jabber," dropping some classic non sequiturs and slams. The second list is a short one, with only the lyrically dicey "Out Demon Out" and the blues filler instrumental "Discobilly" taking up residence. There's a third one, too, where the experiments are stashed; both the electronic tone poem and slab of musique concrète that show up on side two are unexpected and actually a lot of weird fun, while the smoky instrumental "Viva Dolor" feels like a soundtrack to a night of mystery. There's no doubt that Heavy Trash fans would rather have an album of newly recorded music, but as stopgaps and/or closet-emptying exercises go, Noir! is a pretty good one.

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