ReviewsTwangin'!

Robbie Fulks

South Mouth
Bloodshot BS 023

Goodbye Good Looking /I Told Her Lies /Heart, I Wish You Were Here /I Push Right Over /Cold Statesville Ground /Forgotten But Not Gone /Busy Not Crying /I Was Just Leaving /WWhat The Lord Hath Wrought (Any Fool Can Knock Down) /Dirty Mouth Flo /You Wouldn't Do That To Me /Fuck This Town /South Richmond Girl

South Mouth is Robbie Fulks second excellent album on Chicago's Insurrgent Country Label Bloodshot. And like his first one, this ones a good 'un. Robbies Fulks strength lies in his songwriting abilities. There's not a subject that he's afraid to address. Fulks brings something back to Country Music that's been missing for a long time: The Dark Side. Nashville hasn't released a good killing song in longer than I can remember. Prison and Execution songs are out too. Even cheating songs are frowned upon. Country Music has become homoginized, pasturized, floridated and certified free of harmful caricigens in order to be made safe for the linedancing, health concious, politically correct, enviromentally aware, public.

As the Darth Vader of Country Music, Fulks encourages us to look at the dark side. From the cheating song of "I Told Her Lies" where the main character is a lieing, cheating, betraying scoundrel who tells us the way to stand tall in humanities eyes is to ignore the laws of God and keep telling those lies. "Cold Statesville Ground" is a powerful song that tells of a violent murder of a young girl with no clue toward motive -- it's told from the killers view as he is facing his execution. I don't think Garth or Vince will be rushing to cover this one. "South Richmond Girl" is a beautiful classic country killing song that one could expect from the likes of the Delmore Brothers or the Louvins with just Fulks and Jim DeWan singing duet accompanied by acoustic guitar and upright bass. A killing song with a twist at the end.

Fulks lived in Nashville and tried to make it as a songwriter for years. But Nashville wasn't ready for someone with the spirit of Fulks. The hilarious "Fuck This Town" chronicles that musical journey. But don't make the mistake of thinking that Fulks can only write dark killing or humourous songs. He writes real country music of longing and heartbreak too, I was just Leaving and "Heart I Wish You Were Here" are just two examples. He can do the joyous uptempo numbers and the sad weepers with equal apploumb. There is never a bad or throwaway song on a Fulks album. Recently signed to Geffen Records, Fulks is headed for the big time. As talented a performer as he a songwriter, a Robbie Fulks show is a don't miss event. So do whatever you have to see him live, go out and buy these discs and embrace the dark side. And always remember, I am your Father, Luke.

Man, I got to quit eating cheap pizza and watching cable TV so late at night.

--Jeff Wall




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