ANGEL DEAN & SUE GARNER
(Diesel Only Records / Trocadero Records)
Also available via Glitterhouse mailorder.
With their "gothic country" Angel Dean and Sue Garner set out on new pathways, far from the beaten track. They knew each other already from their artistic adventures in East Greenwich Village during the mid-eighties, now they made their first album together: "Pot Liquor". That means: the savory juice left in the pot after you've cooked up a mess of greens, or whatever it is you choose to boil.
Their duets sound like the angels singing and have enchanting, mostly acoustic arrangements. But also with that ominous effect of a fuzz-guitar, a clarinet or a bass harmonica. Just when you start humming along, the melody heads into the opposite direction. The lyrics begin innocently enough: listen to the sound of the sea in a big shell. But Angel's husband Jonathan Thomas lent a helping hand and he is a horror writer, so beware! Pretty soon we end up at an old graveyard in the woods... Mysterious creatures in the wilderness might come out to take revenge on the humans, who keep themselves busy building high-rises and parking lots, destroying all beauty. What's hiding in a sand bank? "Things with stingers and claws." The water of the quarry pond, where three little boys drowned last August, is ice cold. The last story ends with a "bloody shovel", while that organ plays a solo. Just
take a deep breath now, like a child after listening to a creepy fairy tale.
The album actually turned out too odd, to make comparisons with other artists, but fans of Rennie from The Handsome Family, Freakwater and Jolie Holland before she went commercial will be just as enthusiastic about it as I am. Pictures in the digipack show Angel and Sue as ladies pushing fifty, who let their hair go grey and still wear it long, no obligation to dye or perm, fantastic!
Written by Johanna J. Bodde, Dutch original of this review previously published on Real Roots Cafe, The Netherlands.