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Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones s/t LP

  • Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones s/t LP

Sad to say, there's not a lot of bands from the late 2000's small label vinyl rush that I feel the need to keep up to date with. Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones are very much an exception to that rule though.

From my first encounter with their music I always thought they were a bit special. A band that has their own sound without resorting to any desperate posturing or gimmicks. A very rare thing in the post modern collage age.

They haven't deviated from their initial template in any obvious, calculating way, and they didn't need to. They manage to cover a lot of territory, bouncing between something akin to the rough hewn power of the Thunders/Hell Heartbreakers and Zuma era Crazy Horse without ever aping anyone. Beyond such signposts they are always more themselves than anyone else.

Vocals are split between Casey and Ted. Casey brings you the dark and unfiltered utterances of the loner who sits in the corner glaring, and Ted who is marginally more involved in the party. The back and forth between such songs as 'With all due respect' (with its fantastically atonal guitar solo) and 'Breakfast in the afternoon' is stimulating and never jarring. They're a slightly malevolent tag team with great tunes.

The standout track for me is probably 'Negro Bordello' with its unexpected chord changes, rumbling rhythm section, stooge like sleigh bells and musings on such subjects as nasal soft tissue. That 'Woooo!' doesn't hurt either.

You could wander around the US of A as long as you liked without stumbling across anything as pungent and vital as the stuff these Wisconsin characters are playing. You should buy their record.
-Dan Melchior

Give it a listen at https://hueblancsjoylessones.bandcamp.com/