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[Off The Record]
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The Sadies

The Sadies are nothing if not versatile genre elbow rubbers — equally adept at picking an old-fashioned rock-and-stomp pocket (a cover of Dallas Frazier’s " Wearin’ That Loved On Look " ) as they are a pastoral Goffin/King reverie (a straight but sublime reading of " Wasn’t Born To Follow " ) or a haunted Gun Club rumination on the Great Hereafter ( " Mother of Earth " ). The Toronto quartet’s own material on their third LP is just as quirkily impressive. Led by singer/guitarist brothers Dallas and Travis Good, the Sadies come on at first like a souped-up ’60s C&W band — shit-kickin’ the sawdust and working a twangy, tangy groove with the barroom fervor of an outfit that’s been paid off in tequila shots. But before long, echoes of Ennio Morricone and John Barry crossed with Phil Spector and baroque-period Stones (the " Play with Fire " –ish instrumental " Empty the Chamber " ) insinuate themselves into the mix, suggesting something richer, deeper, weirder, and just as much fun.

With its childlike derangement, " The Creepy Butler " is a hoky little instrumental; and the garage sneer of " FLASH " nicks its licks from any one of a dozen Paul Revere & the Raiders and Pretty Things tunes. A cracked Dust Bowl swirl of dobro, lap steel, fiddle, and Hammond organ ebbs and flows like Giant Sand on a handful of tracks, " The Last of the Good " and " 120 Miles Per Hour " being among the best. All over the place? Perhaps. A tremendous effort? Definitely.

(The Sadies headline upstairs at the Middle East next Wednesday, April 5. Call 864-EAST.)


Issue Date: March 22 - March 29, 2001

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