Pugsley Buzzard

Chasin’ Aces

(MGM)Print 

Had the French not founded New Orleans in 1718, and had it not subsequently become such a racial melting pot, much of what dominated popular music in the last 100 years may never have been spawned. Goodbye jazz, R&B, rock’n’roll and funk.

Already steeped in the Crescent City’s music like he was raised in the shadow of a levee, Pugsley Buzzard actually went there to record some of this material (alongside Melbourne and Wentworth Falls sessions). The upshot is music with no trace of fakery; music that bustles and swaggers from the speakers, and dares anyone to say it’s not the real thing. If a steamroller flattening a coarse-chip road could sing it would sound something like Buzzard: massive, unstoppable, raw-edged and slightly dangerous, and his own piano and organ are joined by enough players to create dense layers of voodoo. Were anyone ever foolish enough to try to bottle this album’s swampy contents, keep your head well clear when it’s opened: the will cork will shoot clean through the ceiling.