When it comes to studying the canon of rock and roll studio wizardry, John Pelant is a Ph.D. student. The myriad sonic details that separate merely good records from masterpieces — a specific Casio keyboard tone, a certain pitch on a drum-machine beat, the right amount of reverb — are the very particulars that Pelant revels in. He’s scrutinized some of the greats: Brian Wilson, Paul McCartney, Todd Rundgren…
THE BLACK-EYED SNAKES
“Look to a place where Low, The Fall, and Willie Dixon all have something to say to one another. Then dance fool.” That’s how Spin Magazine’s Andrew Beaujon rolled up the Black-eyed Snakes, a genre-bending electric blues band from Duluth, Minn. fronted by LOW’s and Retribution Gospel Choir’s Alan Sparhawk. Cascading, entrancing beats push thick, raunchy, sometimes-psychedelic guitars into the soul like a lost love or a knife in the back. “The jagged-toothed edge of the guitar alone could saw through every fiber of your emotional restraint,” wrote Melissa Maerz in City Pages.
Making his home in the Mississippi River town of Winona, Minnesota, Mike Munson is well known for playing slide guitar blues. The driving rhythms in his songs are reminiscent of the trains that barrel through his neighborhood. Munson makes regular appearances throughout the Midwest, and is currently working on his third release following a debut studio recording and the acclaimed Live at Ed’s releases in 2014.
“Munson’s too-good-to-be-true slide guitar and wry delivery give [these] cuts an irresistible swagger.” -Hymies Vintage Records, Minneapolis