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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Nick Curran & the Lowlifes "Reform School Girl"

Mavericky Nick Curran--that’s what they call him these days. Mavericky seems appropriate given his all-orginals song choice and vaporous recording method on Reform School Girl (Electro Groove Records). In a Wild Ones cap bad-ass sort of way Reform School Girl sounds crusty and a little dusty but that’s part of its roughhewn charm; if you call pinks socks roughhewn. At first you might think you put on a Little Richard album without cleaning the needle first given the Penniman inspired vocal whoops and vintage palm-sliding piano of Derek Bossanova. To be sure, Curran is rambunctious but not reckless, psycho but not scary. Reform School Girl helps Curran find his place in today’s roots music scene without going to cheese. Cheesey is different from flamboyant as you know. Flamboyant has everything to do with being on stage, breaking a leg and living it up. By doing that Curran makes us feel like we’re in ye days of old and the era of flamboyant types like Orvis Goodnight, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, and Guitar Slim—who had the stage antics down green hair plus. Curran takes us on a wild trip on his motorcycle with slicing rockabilly guitar in the side car and early rock on the transistor radio. He gives it the gas hard all the way through the tight corners and careens about you’d swear he just turned off the headlight in the dark. Not that he's reckless or disrespectful but he runs over expectation flattening convention along the way via a double- dose of punk attitude. Now we’re slithering along the underbelly of the seamy blues world of the Lowlifes where inhabits tough lovers, everybody’s lover (Lusty Li'l Lucy), Pinky Tuscadero-types, and old-school record parties. Curran has spent meaningful time with rockabilly’s Ronnie Dawson, the Fabulous Thunderbirds (Painted On), and his own punk band (Deguello). On Reform School Girl all these hit money at once and the result is cashtastic.

Nick Curran & the Lowlifes wsg the Rowley Wheeler Band appear at Billy's Lounge on July 22, 9pm. $10

Nick Curran's Myspace Page

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