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Nine ragged songs that interweave supple dance rhythms with a writerly taste for the surreal, Wood & Waste is a charmingly decadent record from singer-guitarist Tom Rodwell, (best known as frontman for Storehouse and itinerant session man for the likes of Don McGlashan).
Like the best short stories, Wood & Waste transforms skeletal structures into something fleshy and feverish, melding together outlandish influences with both improvisation and minimalist, dream-logic songwriting.
The album’s centrepiece is “She Got Me Boiling”, a juggernaut of psychedelic calypso grafted to mindless riffs on cannibalism that would make the Mighty Sparrow blush. Driven by Rodwell’s trademark bass-heavy guitar and animated carnival drums from NZ free improv notorieties Chris O’Connor and Jeff Henderson, it’s a fiendishly irresistible piece of music, as is the absurdist one-chord bottleneck slide freak-out “Touch Me Like a Teddybear” - a lascivious black hole of meaninglessness and satire.
Elsewhere “Keep on Knockin’” subverts a grim Bo Diddley beat with dissonant Mellotron in praise of Edward Hopper and William Morris, while “Plenty Time” is a species of prog rhumba set in Roman Britain, indebted to Nigerian giant King Sunny Ade.
Tracked on tape at Roundhead Studios, via The Who’s old Neve console, Wood & Waste is an entirely analog production with no digital conversion at any stage. Mastering and lacquer cut directly from 1/2” mixdown tapes by the legendary Kevin Gray in LA.
1. Don't Be A Fugitive All Your Life
2. Keep On Knockin'
3. Plenty Time
4. Carry On
1. Touch Me Like A Teddybear
2. She Got Me Boiling
3. Small Town
4. Make Believe
5. Dead End Road