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Herman Jolly
Mad Cowboy Disease
Jolly Records

Herman will be plagued by vocal comparisons to J Mascis, J Lennon, and N Young. With this aside, his minimal folk instrumentation and brilliant lyrics can be addressed. This is a thoughtful and clever human we are dealing with. Darkness and levity exist in us to some degree at the same time. Jolly recognizes this and acknowledges both with equal expertise.

Futility has two voices here: first represented in sorrow and regret in Crooked Vein. In which the alcoholic subject describes more undeserved than unrequited love. The more light-hearted You Crazy states, "I crammed your cat into the dryer / to try and make you crazy / but you were already crazy."

The sparseness of Lady’s Hands and Slow Dance invoke Mazzy Star. The former makes beauty of a horrific subject, with homicidal echoing steel. While the later has the innocence of one who views women as muses. Alternately lionizing and vilifying them in turn.

Drunk finds the singer close to falling asleep at the guitar. His brand of high-pitched singing mistakenly thought to impress women keeps him awake. The hilarious run-on sentence Gin Kicks In follows as an instant classic. Quotes from this song will circulate for years. Ween sneaks Gone on the album. Woodshack Willy proves that Gin is not a fluke, touting, " the countriest western singer I ever saw." The Dream cruelly tells the story of an unwanted gift.

After these country blues highlights, the remainder falls flat unless you really, really like Rufus Wainright.

- Ewan Wadharmi

Track Listing

  1. Crooked Vein
  2. You Crazy
  3. Lady’s Hands
  4. Slow Dance
  5. Drunk
  6. Gin Kicks In
  7. Gone Gone Gone
  8. Woodshack Willy
  9. The Dream
  10. Gingerbread Mansion
  11. Christmas Yet
  12. No Joy Bad Luck Club











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