As with most Voodoo Rhythm releases, I was thrown for a loop when I first popped C.W. Stoneking’s King Hokum into the CD player. I took a look at the cover art—a faded picture of a guy from a decade long past holding some sort of dobro resonator guitar—scratched my head and thought, “Huh.” The music brings to mind Robert Johnson and Louis Armstrong; old delta blues plucked languidly and sung in a rich but broken voice that would turn a lot of those old bluesmen green with envy. The album is set in a fictitious Southern town in the 1920s and uses the Dodo bird, bad luck, and bad lovin’ as its subject matter. “You Took My Thing and Put It in Your Place” is a hilarious, tongue-in-cheek duet with loads of sexual innuendo and enough innocent charm to keep you from focusing on the fact that it’s about erectile dysfunction. Once again, Voodoo Rhythm scores with an offbeat, unique release that will spend hours and hours in my CD player.
–benke (Voodoo Rhythm)