ROSS JOHNSON: Make It Stop!: CD

This is real life. Outsider artists make some killer music. Ross has been a Memphis cult legend for decades now. Goner, purveyors of all good things Memphis, put out this comp of his “most” from ‘79 to ‘06, a solid collection and a great CD book/confession written by Ross himself. Ross contains the usual underground genius many garage-it-yourself guys do, in the ramshackle vein of Hasil Adkins but with an uncanny tight sound—maybe because all kinds of talent played with him; Alex Chilton, The Gibson Bros, Jon Spencer, Tav Falco, Jim Dickenson, Peter Buck, Monsieur Jeffrey Evans—and that’s just who is in the press release. You could cry thinking this music might have never been found, like the great songs The Cramps resurrected: true hobo poet moments over stomping music, as Ross just talks those lyrics out. Take the creeeeepy-cool “Wet Bar”: “Honey why did you go away? Why did you take our wet bar? …So I got a drinking problem, what’s new? Couldn’t we work it out? Couldn’t we have a drink or something?” Reality.

 –mike (Goner)