DAN SARTAIN: Dudesblood: CD

Dan Sartain’s records are described as influenced by blues and rockabilly, and I can feel bits of that at points herein, but, for the most part, this record is a mixed bag of musical stylings that veer all over the ludic map (in a good way) and are sewn together through techno instrumentation. The record opens with the titular rave-up, making one think that we’re in for a real raucous affair, but then Sartain yanks the rug of expectation out from under us and sends us on a meandering walking tour of the musical landscape. This is good, mind you. Highlights include Anthony Perkins’ “Moonlight Swim” and the simplistically beautiful and almost childlike “Marfa Lights,” which has a resonant and haunting quality to it—that song has stuck in my head for days, and I’m not upset about that. There is no sure way to describe this record since it doesn’t fit neatly into any one style or genre (again, a good thing). About the closest I can get is to suggest that Sartain’s musical concerns channel the spirit of Tom Waits—especially Waits’s recent work—as a means of creating coherence through a variety of styles. Good stuff. 

 –Eric Carlson (One Little Indian)