yawpers Boy In a Well (CD, £12.50)label: bloodshot
The Yawpers' third album is a sensational tragedy set in World War I France, about a mother abandoning her unwanted newborn child. But, like the band itself, there's so much more roiling beneath the surface. Recorded in Chicago by Alex Hall (JD McPherson, Pokey LaFarge, The Cactus Blossoms, The Flat Five) at Reliable Recordings with production assistance and instrumental contributions from Tommy Stinson (The Replacements, Bash & Pop), here The Yawpers' stretch their sound and ambition in challenging, impassioned, and dynamic directions. Boy in a Well sounds like Alan Lomax using his field recorder to capture Mance Lipscomb ripping a laced joint (or something much more potent) with The Cramps and strapping on their instruments to let it fly. But while the band dials into the finest, frenetic trucker-speed induced scuzz blues, there is a patience and dark soul within and between songs, much like the blank space between paragraphs and chapters. Each track is a division of the plot that seamlessly blends into the next. Boy in a Well is complex; it's a manically conceived, historically situated, emotionally underscored plot-driven fictive universe. It's demented, unpredictable, taboo, ambitious, and yet distinctively cohesive.
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