BILLY AUGUST & THE JULY MONARCHY: Drunk Dial 2: 7”

Portland’s Drunk Dial Records does a thing where they get an artist in the studio, have them get drunk, then write and record an original song, and cover a classic song. The finished product is released on a 7”, and this was the result. To be honest, I was expecting a shit show from a band that was “drunk on one giant bottle of cheap vodka, a 12-pack of PBR, and more Milwaukee’s Best Ice than the artist is willing to admit.” I was pleasantly surprised to hear a really great original organ-infused garage/power pop song. They covered Hal Ketchum’s “Small Town Saturday Night,” and turned an up-tempo traditional country song into a slow, heart-wrenching tune that could be played during a character’s breakdown in a movie. Neither song really lent any idea that the artist was drunk—aside from the beverage being opened at the end of the cover, being sipped, and letting out a satisfying “ahh.” I think it added a raw and intimate sound to the tracks, and am going to look into some of the other artists that have done this. –Cynthia Pinedo (Drunk Dial)