Friday, August 31, 2012

Scrapomatic -- "I'm A Stranger (And I Love The Night)"

I'm kind of surprised that "I'm A Stranger (And I Love The Night)" is the fourth release by Scrapomatic, and that Mike Mattison and Paul Olsen have been writing and playing together for thirteen years. I did not think they would last thing long, especially after Mattison took the gig singing for the Tedeschi Trucks Band. But the collaboration between Mattison and Olsen continues to bear fruit, and the writing of Mattison and Olsen continues to make Scrapomatic an interesting and evolving band. Now the duo has expanded into a trio with the addition of Dave Yoke on guitar. The rhythm section is Atlanta-based Ted Peccio on bass and Tyler Greenwell on drums.

The songs are all Mattison-Olsen originals, and they are all well written. The two-guitar direction by Olsen and Yoke is impressive--there is still a lot of really good guitar on this cd, especially on "Rat Trap" and "Night Trains, Distant Whistles." "Don't Fall Apart On Me, Baby" sounds like a great unknown Taj Mahal song, and "I Surrender" sounds like a song Bob Dylan might have written for "Together Through Life," but with a great guitar solo. "Crime Fighter" may be the most ambitious song here--with Olsen singing falsetto over a bed of sweet but tough guitars. Mattison sings great on "Alligator Love Cry" (old title, new song) and on "The Mother of My Wolf;" Olsen sings great on the title track, which he wrote. Mace Hibbard on tenor saxophone and Kevin Hyde on trombone guest and add some horn soul to "How Unfortunate For Me." "The Party's Over" features a sing-along chorus and great guitar by Yoke.

These guys are not a traditional blues band--probably they never were. But they are a terrific roots & blues & rock band. This one is not quite as gritty as their last disc, 2008's "Sidewalk Ceasars," but it is still my favorite of their four releases, and I'm excited to see where they go next.

You can buy this cd at the I-Tunes or Amazon--it is on the Landslide record label.   

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