Also rec­om­mended:

Pasatiempo - - In Other Words -

▼ The Filthy South Ses­sions by Ber­nadette Seacrest & Her Provo­ca­teurs. Back in the early part of this cen­tury, Ber­nadette Seacrest, then with a band called The Yes Men, was a fix­ture on the Al­bu­querque and Santa Fe cir­cuit, play­ing her smoky, sul­try, sexy torch songs and cock­tail jazz. The group broke up by the end of 2005 and Seacrest grew dis­cour­aged with the mu­sic biz in gen­eral. She flew south. But she reemerged in At­lanta with a new band, The Provo­ca­teurs, and she sounds as smoky, sul­try, and sexy as ever.

All the songs on this al­bum are writ­ten by her gui­tarist, Charles Wil­liams. (The other Provo­ca­teur is Kris Dale, whose main in­stru­ment is dou­ble bass.) The tunes are all well suited for Seacrest’s voice and per­sona, and a few re­ally stand out.

“Empty Streets” is slow and omi­nous with its re­frain, “I love you, daddy, but put down that gun”— it sounds like it could be straight out of some film noir sound­track. “G-d’s Been Drink­ing” — which starts out with a sweet, a cap­pella “Amaz­ing Grace” — is bound to in­vite com­par­isons with Tom Waits (“When the lo­custs start to flyin’ I started thinkin’ / What would hap­pen if God started drinkin’”).

“The Rain Has Rained Away” hints at Seacrest’s rock­a­billy roots (an early band of hers was The Long Goners), with a cool steel-gui­tar solo by Dale.

Most of the tracks fea­ture the ba­sic band, but the up-tempo “Where Does it Hurt,” which has guest drums and or­gan, is a treat, as is “Trash­can Lens,” which fea­tures a horn sec­tion and brake-drum per­cus­sion.

It’s great to hear from Ber­nadette again. Check out bernadette­

The Big En­chi­lada: My pod­cast is now fea­tured along with some of the greats, like RadiObliv­ion, Sonic Night­mares, and The Nasty Grind, at GaragePunk Hide­out, And you can still find it at bi­gen­chi­ladapod­ Check out my grow­ing list of pod­casts and hear them on your iPod or com­puter. ◀

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