The Archives : The Gourds "Stadium Blitzer" (1998)

If pressed to name the best band since say, 1997, I'd probably consider a few and then ultimately land on Austin, Texas' The Gourds. As far as recorded output and live shows, I really don't see any comparison. Co-fronted by Kevin "Shinyribs" Russell and Jimmy Smith, and backed by Claude Bernard, Max Johnston and Keith Langford, not only have they released just shy of ten fantastic records, but they have been arguably the best live act for over a decade. Sure, there have been bands competing for that badge, most notably Centro-matic, Slobberbone, Arcade Fire, Wilco and Josh Ritter, to name a few, but as far as longevity and spirit, no one touches The Gourds.

Stadium Blitzer is their second record, just a year past the wonderful debut Dems Good Beeble. Songs such as "Magnolia," "Boil My Strings," "LGO," "I Ate the Haggis" and "Cold Bed" remain fan favorites, and the lesser known tracks such "Pushed Her Down," "Raining In Port Arthur," and "When the Money Comes Rolling In" are just about half of what is a massive artistic accomplishment. This record is as much fun as it is introspective, but the overriding feel is a spirited collection of songs that should be remembered for decades to come. And at least in this household, there's no question that they will be.

This is a must-have for well, everyone? And once you've made this purchase, it's time to buy everything else, including this year's Haymaker!, a record that could land atop my year end best of.


Scott said...

Gourds= The Great American Band.
Stadium Blitzer is such a great record. I've heard that Cold Bed was the first Gourds song. Love Boil My Strings too.

All should check out their new song Country Lovin'
2:43 of Gourds blitz and my top song of 2009 so far!

Anonymous said...

blitzer is a great record. it's also true that they're untouchable as a live act. go see them and have some fun. trust me, you'll be back.

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