Music Review-Lydia Lunch & Cypress Grove: Under the Covers

1. Ode To Billie Joe (Bobbie Gentry)
2. Breakdown (Tom Petty)
3. A Thousand Miles Of Bad Road (Aaron Lee Tasjan)
4. Blaze of Glory (Jon Bon Jovi)
5. Red, White and Pink Slip Blues (Bud Tower, Mark Stephen Jones)
6. Midnight Rider (Gregg Allman, Robert Payne)
7. The Spy (Jim Morrison)
8. I Want You (Elvis Costello)
9. Won’t Leave You Alone (James Johnston, Lydia Lunch)
10. Do It Again (Donald Fagen, Walter Becker)
11. Low (Davey Faragher, David Lowery, Johnny Hickman)

Review-I like to think that I did not discover Lydia Lunch in my teens, that she discovered me. Lydia Lunch has made a career out of challenging listeners with her music. Challenging film lovers to not be manipulated with her beauty and power in her short film history. Challenging the system to change for her, not her for it when she does her spoken word tours. Lydia has teamed up with musician galore Cypress Grove for their newest collaboration. This cd of cover songs is not what you will expect. When you say a musician is releasing a cover song, people already have preconceived notions that the musicians involved are going to harm the original. In the case of these two, this album is going to manipulate the listener in a different mind set. This album makes the songs feel fresh. I mean they cover everything from Steely Dan to Cracker. They do a version of Jon Bon Jovi’s “Blaze of Glory”. To say this album is very obscure and at times very odd, is like saying water is wet. The album opens with Bobbie Gentry’s 1967 classic, “ Ode to Billy Joe”.

Where you expect them to tackle the southern feel of the song, they turn this into a bluesy almost sultry affair. You expect some dim light dive and a woman asking you to light her cigarette after she washes out the stains of a past lover to speak directly to you. This song takes on a whole new meaning when the harmonica comes into play during it. The duo tackle Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers 1977 song “ Breakdown”. The guitar work on this song romances Lydia’s straightforward vocal approach. This song demonstrates that 40 years in this industry, she can still belt it out with the best of them. She goes for broke with a vocal approach that makes me a fan all over again. During this record, she incorporates spoken word and also poetry. Each song introduces the listener to a new tempo and journey. This cd is nothing short of daring and remarkable. There is not one moment on this cd that was not stellar. This is Lydia’s best work in quite a while easily. The musicianship on this cd makes you reminisce for the Teenage Jesus and the Jerks comeback record that is supposedly coming out. Lydia is still punk, she is still angry and most of all her beauty keeps music so pure and honest.

9 out of 10