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The Hangmen

Cactusville

Review by Gary Hill

The newest disc from The Hangmen finds them plying their usual suspects of sounds. Those leanings range from punk rock to Americana, garage rock and more. They even take it toward country at times. All in all, this is a cool set. It seems to be divided with the punkier music at the beginning and the more purely Americana based stuff at the end. I don't usually find clear divisions like that to be effective, but somehow here it is.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2019  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Cactusville
Drums lead us in. A cool punk rocking jam finishes the introduction. It drops way down for the verse, but powers back up for the chorus.
Lookin' For Blood
A screaming hot punk tune, this feels a lot like The Dead Boys to me. It is a great tune. There is a drop down to drums before the song is rebuilt on that framework.
Man In Black's Hand
This is set a bit more in a pure rock and roll vibe. It's another effective song on a disc that's full of effective music.
Nobody's Girl
A killer hard rocker, this thing is more on the punky edge of things. It feels a bit like a cross between the last two cuts. There are some hints of The Rolling Stones built into it, too.
Death Valley
Another energized punk rocker, this is a strong cut.
Cold Memory Blues
They bring some serious country music to this piece. It's a mellower number that leans toward balladic and features some twangy guitar in a supporting role.
Don't Count Me Out
This has some country and Americana in the mix. It's a folk rock styled cut with some hints of punky elements in the mix. The clean guitar work later in the piece is classy.
Black Boots
Americana merges with a punky edge here. This is another solid tune.
Don't Look Back
Starting as a ballad, this grows out gradually with lots of style. It's built on a retro rock kind of structure. It has punky elements at play, too, though. I'm reminded of something like The Animals more than I am punk rockers, though. It wanders into some trippy psychedelia near the end.
 
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