Duende! With David J – Oracle of the Horizontal (Glass Modern, GLAMLP005)
This is the sixth long player for Detroit based Duende! and they have enlisted some big guns to help with this outing. David J (ex-Bauhaus / Love & Rockets / The Jazz Butcher and solo artist extraordinaire) is the prominent guest lending vocals, bass and harmonica to this audio film-noir.
This is quite a different sound for Duende! than what I have heard from previous albums like 2014’s “Mezcal” or 2016’s singles, “Dance Party” and “HEAD (and How to Get it)”. Gone is that Jon Spencer Blues Explosion-like party vibe replaced with dark grit, reverbed distortion, Mellotrons and brass! Two other guest musicians from the Motor City who are along for the grim ride are none other than Warren DeFever of His Name is Alive and Joshua James of Theatre Bizarre Orchestra (who also did an album with a certain mysterious M.C. Nightshade).
“Out of My Dreams” grooves like a bad trip. “Motor City Squeeze” was the first track from here to air in the world. David J’s vocal is prominent and the riff is damn catchy. The third track, “In the Shadow of 45” is an excellent fuzz-filled trek with some wailing harmonica courtesy of Mr. Haskins. “Queen Moon and the Brazen Bull” sounds like an homage to Johnny Cash musically. The spoken vocal comes in heavy and up front, painting a gorgeous picture. “Alice Through the Windscreen” is our first introduction to Warren and Joshua’s contributions. The sounds added by these two (plus John Raleeh and Dave Vesella on Trombone and Trumpet respectively) help add texture to the laid back nature of the song. Closing it all out is the almost 14 minute opus, “Oracle”. It truly is like an audio book from hell! David J’s words are a stream of consciousness, showcasing some dark world from a Lovecraft tale and in the end he leaves us with; “But tragedy is all illusion, and in the deepest deep I know that all this endless circle is benign and to do with God, and God knows that one more grave is yet another womb. One more grave is yet another womb. One more grave is yet another womb. One more tomb is another womb.”
All in all, this is a heavy work. Heavy in the music, words and experience. This is meant to get into your head and make you go back to that surreal estate again and again, even if it left you shaken the first time. The trips worth taking.
Pre-order the vinyl and CD - https://glassmodern.bandcamp.com/album/oracle-of-the-horizontal
Glass Modern - https://glassmodern.bandcamp.com/
David J - http://www.davidjonline.com/
Duende! - https://duendetroit.bandcamp.com/
Michael Mitchell's love of music started at an early age and slowly became an addiction that courses through his veins to this very day. It is guaranteed that if you are in his proximity that he will try to get you to travel to the nearest record store and make you buy beyond your means. His wife and two children acknowledge his problem and continue to encourage him into rehab.
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