The wonderful Waits-ian mythmaking in the Bandcamp “liner notes,” explaining the inception of the record through a run-in with “Dickie Silk and the Hard Road Home,” sets the tone for Golden Gunn’s self-titled debut (and probably one-off) psych-country record. This is music that’s giddy and goofy and clinks longnecks with your ears.
Charming, reverb-warmed acoustic guitar lines – all palm-scuffed and de-tuned – are the backbone of the record. But it’s the strange digital mutations that creep up throughout that command the most attention: the constant coil of reversed fuzz-box electric seemingly misplaced and trapped within “Vysehrad” (or how the song ends with a MIDI monk chorus that bleeds into the next song); the Phil Collins metronome underneath wacky flanged textures of “The Sun Comes Up a Purple Diamond”; the Casio bongos and triangle that fleck “From a Lincoln Continental,” a song that would soundtrack a comically long cop-serial stakeout. These playful elements Thelma-and-Louise each song over the hokey precipice into cheeky destruction. I see a lonely country boy cobbling this record together in a trailer and beaming it at the sky in hopes of provoking an alien encounter.
This is a side project of good musicians having fun as they poke holes in the conventions of their genre (compare the Ringo roadhouse blues of “Let Me Shine” to the elegance of Hiss Golden Messenger’s Haw). “Goner” is one chord, fer Chrissakes! But the joy is contagious and easily transferred, so have fun with them.