Rock’n’roll is dead. Gallows Wine is a wake for it’s charred remains.
Calvin Johnson traveled to Columbus, Mississippi to record Gallows Wine with the combo Hartle Road at their Pompeii studio. Columbus, in Lowndes County, is the childhood home of Tennessee Williams (just down US Route 45 from White Station, birthplace of Howlin’ Wolf). Songs reflecting this singular environment include: “Pink Cadillac” written by Calvin when he was 16 (held in reserve for just the right session); title song ”Gallows Wine” rips psycho psychedelic, poetic license intact; “Crazy Legs” is a Gene Vincent class act celebrating our sock hopulation; “Orange Aid” melts downtown no WAV. Yeah, Gallows Wine gets primitive: Lurch pulls a night shift on organ, Grandma Moses on the fife and drum. Calvin busk, melodica garage worm profane. Rockabilly spin cycle, guitar scrape and crush. Hand jive.
Gallows Wine is a triumph of gut bucket crash pop and guitar-laden music sustaining life on other planets; an otherworldly collection of soundz and fragments of toe-tapping goodness.
You wanted Calvin Johnson howling beyond the magnolia curtain, you got it: Gallows Wine.
Rock’n’roll is dead. Long live rock’n’roll.
Calvin Johnson, Gallows Wine [KLP290] can be streamed on the K Bandcamp site.