EP : Crooked Cowboy and the Freshwater Indians : Annalog and Her Hopeful Diaries

I’m crackin’ up, nodding my head, and mouthing a hosanna: Finally, someone understands the need for a track called “History of the Bug (Part IV),” another song about “Bed Bugs,” and one simply called “Bodies.” Well, “finally” doesn’t really apply, since Crooked Cowboy has apparently been around longer than Job (or at least since the mid-‘90s). Before he met up with the Freshwater Indians, he played with the Blue Hawaiians and shared stages with artists including John Lee Hooker, Beck, and Stereolab.

Annalog and Her Hopeful Diariesis a captivating array of ridiculously fresh sounds cloaked in gently unassuming eccentricity. Passages that could represent the mumblings of Leonard Cohen and Willie Nelson after they’ve had a few morph or give way to psychedelic soundscapes bolstered by damp percussion and soprano warbling verging on Yma Sumac’s bizarro-cism. There are sporadic specklings of electronica; a drizzle that never turns into a downpour. It’s one of the most creative uses of digital sound I’ve ever heard.

There are so many more things that could be said about this EP. One: At approximately 20 minutes, it’s much too short. Two: It’s like a poor man’s Robert Wyatt. Three: Tom Waits has some serious competition (or the best potential bill-sharer in his history). Four:  You (if “you” is someone with a hunger for truly alternative, exceptionally creative, oddly pleasing music) just have to hear the damned thing. So… here’s the title track:

MP3 : Crooked Cowboy and the Freshwater Indians – Annalog and Her Hopeful Diaries

Annalog and Her Hopeful Diaries, including a 500-copy run on black vinyl (with a download featuring bonus tracks), is out September 4th, on Neurotic Yell Records.

Post by Mary Leary

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