Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Ry Cooder - Pull Up Some Dust & Sit Down - Release Review

Now and again I feel the need to present releases that I have collected on my own which have not been sent to me for review by record companies or artists. In this case, Ry Cooder's Pull Up Some Dust & Sit Down. Cooder opens the release with a classic No Banker's Left Behind. This is a great social commentary done in civil war/county fashion and could just as easily be from one of his early depression era releases. With military drumming and acoustic stringed instruments, it's a treat to the ears. Next up is a Tex Mex El Corrido De Jesse James.This track has the very traditional waltz rhythm with horns and accordion. Superb! Dirty Chateau is a melancholy ballad with a sweet melody and warm harmonies. Cooder plays some characteristic slide work with strings and this track is a bit more polished than I typically expect from the slide master. Humpty Dumpty World has a world beat (island rhythm- reggae). It's really nicely constructed and executed. Another Tex Mex track , Christmas Time This Year, has a real "war reality" message contrasted against the happy traditional music from south of the border (polka)... and whether you like the message or not, it is really well done. Baby Joined The Army is a really experimental type track with almost acapella singing sans environmental sounds created by stringed instruments in a very earthy fashion. Another spectacular track. Lord Tell Me Why is another cool track built around a R&B/gospel styling. It is an incredibly powerful track with mostly vocal and percussion. I Want My Crown is a voodoo Rhythm'd blues track with deep roots. This track is incredibly cool! Ahhh! John Lee Hooker For President! The thought... ok. But this track is off the hook. Hooker is one of my all time favorite blues singers specifically in his early years and this track captures the absolute essence of Hooker. This is the real blues! Dreamer is another sweet Tex Mex track accompanied not only by accordion but also a woodwind instrument. The vocal lead is lush and the percussion is crisp and precise. Cooder's guitar accompaniment is spot on. Really nice! If There's A God is a cool little rocker with Cooder pushing the rhythm along with the Coodercaster. His well known slide work is present here and sparingly applied. Closing this incredible set of recordings is No Hard Feelings. Constructed a lot like an early western track (with spoken lyrics and underplayed instrumentation at the beginning). The vocals on this track aren't gonna qualify Cooder for Star Search but the depth and feeling in the track are real and I have to say, this release ranks in Cooders top 10 releases... and that's good company. If you haven't picked up a release by Cooder in a few years, this is one to buy. It's the best I've heard since Buena Vista and I am a die hard Cooder fan.

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