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All killer, no filler., May 20, 2006

Heavy Ornamentals
Each listen of this album, front to back, it is like a road trip through varied terrain, all beautiful, often funny, sometimes sentimental.The production compliments the songwriting and performances elegantly. The blurbs and farts and honks are all there, non-autotuned, non-beatdetected... raw yet complex- like the lyrical and harmonic composition. The honesty is an audible bonanza to the discerning ear (as well as to the casual listener).Soon I'll have to move off of the awesome ballad, "Our Patriarch," and find a different song to listen to thirty seven consecutive times. The section on my hard drive that contains the file for "New Roomate" has probably been corrupted from overuse. Or Gourd stank.This is good music.

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Topic Title Summary Views
Each listen of this album, front to back, it is like a road trip through varied terrain, all beautiful, often funny, sometimes sentimental.The production compliments the songwriting and performances elegantly. The blurbs and farts and honks are all there, non-autotuned, non-beatdetected... raw yet complex- like the lyrical and harmonic composition. The honesty is an audible bonanza to the discerning ear (as well as to the casual listener).Soon I'll have to move off of the awesome ballad, "Our Patriarch," and find a different song to listen to thirty seven consecutive times. The section on my hard drive that contains the file for "New Roomate" has probably been corrupted from overuse. Or Gourd stank.This is good music.
3
I saw The Gourds live in Amsterdam in The Paradiso's upstairs hall- all 80 of us. They played from 2-4 on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Great show...not only did I buy this, their latest cd; I even bought me a tee-shirt. Not a weak track here- and I read here that they recorded this in two weeks while recently on tour. This cd sounds very much as though it were live- and in the case of The Gourds, that's a good thing. Standout tracks are (for me, clearly): Pill Bug Blues, Mister Betty, and the cr?me de la cr?me...Shake the Chandelier. Very solid folk/rock more often on the rockin' side. See these guys live, in a great little venue near you- you won't regret it. ps: And a special 'thank you' to The Paradiso's ticket saleswoman who sold me a ticket to The Hackensaw Boys (from 4-6 that same afternoon) and let me in for free to see The Gourds, since I arrived at 2:30...also, if you don't know it already, Amsterdam is one fine fine city.
3
As a long-time Gourds fan, I can tell you with much confidence that the Gourds' 9th release, "Heavy Ornamentals," will fulfill your Gourds fix. In the spectrum of Gourds albums, "Heavy Ornamentals" might come close to or equal "Blood of the Ram," but still doesn't match "Cow, Fish, Fowl or Pig" or their earlier albums."Burn the Honeysuckle" is quintessential Kev Russell and the album's best track. "Pill Bug Blues" and "Shake the Chandelier" are also Russell at his best and go down as all-time Gourds greats. Unfortunately, Jimmy Smith's contributions are par at best and the divide between the likeability of Kev and Jimmy's songs is greater on this album than any other. Ever since "Cow, Fish, Fowl or Pig," Jimmy's creativity has seemed to fall off a bit, and few of his songs stand out on the album. "Weather Woman," "Declineometer" and "New Roomate" are Smith's best tracks. An additional complaint is that Max Johnston-who showed his brilliance in "Cow, Fish, Fowl or...
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