Billy Childish

Troubled Times

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Troubled Times The lone Billy Childish release to credit short-lived backing unit the Delta Men, this two-disc 7" set captures Childish knee-deep in the blues -- the music here is as primitive as an Alan Lomax field recording and more deranged than a hellhound in heat, an idiosyncratic yet potent attempt to channel the otherworldly spirit and power of the Mississippi Delta. The slashing guitars and walking basslines of "Troubled Times" and "I Remember" simmer with juke joint vitality, while the a cappella call-and-response number "Hangman" brings to mind a church choir trapped in limbo -- best of all is Childish's cover of Muddy Waters' seminal "I Just Want to Make Love to You," which comes far closer to approximating the raw sexuality of the original than blooze-rock poseurs like Aerosmith and Eric Clapton could ever dream.