Jesse Malin welcomed some famous friends into the studio
for his Glitter In The Gutter release, including a well
known duet partner for "Broken Radio", Bruce Springsteen.
A glitzy guest list is worthless, however, without great songs.
And Malin also has quality goods to display.
He covers The Replacements' "Bastards of Young"
as a piano ballad, with words that weep over the poor prospects
of a lost generation. But his rendering is at least one generation
removed from when Paul Westerberg first penned the tune
so I guess life isn't getting any better for the young. Poor bastards.
Malin is equally angry about modern day bastards who are hell
bent on holding back today's generation as he sings "Don't
let 'em take you down" during opener "Beautiful Day!"
His underlying philosophy is to live for today, rather than worry
about the future. During "Tomorrow Night" he claims,
"I must confess that I don't care about tomorrow tonight."
As a vocalist, Malin oftentimes sounds scarily close to John
Fogerty, especially the way he curls his lips around the words
to "Lucinda". Noteworthy guitar stylists comprise a
large portion of this project's famous pals, which include Chris
Shiflett (Foo Fighters) and Josh Homme (Queens
Of The Stone Age). Yet Glitter In The Gutter retains
a consistent roots rock feel. His old friend Ryan Adams
is also all over the CD, both vocally and instrumentally, but
this disc's sonic leanings are closer to Stones' '70s electrified
rock than to Adams' acoustic Americana.
By looking for glitter in the gutter, Malin is desperately searching
for bright hope in dark times. And most of the time, he strikes
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