Monday, May 23, 2005

"Down at the Doctor"

Once in a while it's good to stand up at the cliff's edge and feel the elements in your face, to open yourself to the wind, the bleaching sun and let nature's simple but immense force wash over you. Similarly, after years of over-produced, tweaked, EQ'd and glossed music, one in a while it's good to get back to basics: rock and roll, played loudly without a hint of irony or pretence. Which is where Dr Feelgood come in. Nothing sophisticated here, just good old fashioned straight-ahead blues, sung in a sandpaper voice that's harder than brickwork, guitars that slash like an alleyway switchblade and a thudding, solid rhythm section that isn't going anywhere but straight ahead. This is all about sweaty clubs way after closing time, smoke hanging in the air, wet floors, a crowded stage and blues bouncing off the walls in all directions. You'd be a hard person not to get caught up in the moment here; this is loud, brash, fun music with a rhythm that starts in your guts and spreads through you until your ears hum and you can feel the bass at the bridge of your nose. If you thought the "Blues Brothers" was about the blues, then you need to hear this.

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