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July 2014
Cadillac Flambe
"Old American Law
"
mp3

Some bands have the ability to create music that reaches into a chasm of sorrow and affliction, exposing the deepest of wounds. With its latest release Old American LawCadillac Flambe boasts nine heavily weighted tracks that escort the listener through calamitous musical compositions, and tragic tales told by the mesmerizing vocals of husband and wife Kris and Havilah Bruders.

 
Since its previous release, Eli’s Porch, Cadillac Flambe has had to adjust its sound. The band’s harmonica player James “Pappy” Garrett, who was an integral component to its dark Americana blues approach, died in a car accident during the making of the 2011 EP. Shrinking down to a four-piece, the band has shifted in a decidedly more rock ‘n roll direction, still retaining its rootsy nature but packing a more substantial punch.
 
Ushered in by Kris Bruders’ signature gritty blues guitar sound, “Shakin’ Baby” sets the album in motion, highlighted additionally by Michael Payne’s massive but calculated drum work and Dave Duly’s perfectly in-the-pocket bass playing. On this album, Payne and Duly add a collective rhythmic wallop unheard in previous recordings, pervading the tunes with a rock and R&B heartbeat.
 
After the first track, you’re likely in for the ride, which allows Cadillac Flambe to pull you in to its turbulent descent.
 
This emotional tailspin careens to its greatest depths in “3 Bullets,” the album’s longest and most powerful track—one split into two distinct acts. In Act I, Havilah Bruders tells the story of a desperate mother trying to feed her child, reaching out to the church, the government, and the bank, and is turned away by each. Act II arrives in the middle of the song, which slows from a steady 4/4 to a haunting 6/8 groove, as she discloses the news of her child’s death. A chilling anguish is felt as Bruders’ voice rages, a deliriousness is experienced as she transitions from a quiet whimper to a grief-stricken roar, also revealing the song's final crux: the woman has murdered the three entities that indirectly caused her child's death. Her soul and gospel background is most noticeable here, as she carries us through each scene and makes us feel her misery and despair, measure by measure. It’s also apparent in “Sweet Chariot,” where she takes us through a woman’s frenzied fear of impending death, into her answered prayers of serenity and light.
 
Most of the songs on Old American Law were penned by Kris Bruders, whose own vocals have a mystic, commanding, but sincere quality to them. Take “Father to Son” for instance, a narrative about a father’s beliefs and pressures onto his son. Bruders’ vocal delivery at once contains the father’s threatening tone and the son’s subsequent harsh, casual defiance. In the album’s title track, his voice characterizes the overall personality of the album. His words and the dusty Delta blues sound of his hollow-body custom magnesium guitar convey the voice of an uncompromising outlaw. Bruders’ authoritative, booming vocals—often coupled with his wife’s harmonies, sometimes impassioned, sometimes a simple adornment to his own—and the unique gravel of his guitar dig into the meat of each song.
 
Plenty of bands write songs about death, family strife, social issues, and religious conviction, yet few are able to execute it as effectively as Cadillac Flambe does in Old American Law. The throttle of the rhythm section, the bedraggled, melancholy guitar tones, the dissonant piano chords, and the soulful vocals push the message of each song to the forefront. The LP, which was tracked, mixed, and mastered at Little Class Records by Keegan Smith, is the strongest manifestation of anything the band has released to date. 
 
--Michelle Bacon

 

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scene blog

Artists on Trial: Josh Colburn of Little Rosco

Artists on Trial: Josh Colburn of Little Rosco

Little Rosco is one of the newest bands to emerge in what continues to be a growing Kansas City music scene. Though the four-piece rock group only has a couple shows under its belt, it shows promise and willingness to become a force in the musical community. Today, we chat a bit with frontman Josh Colburn.

The Deli: Gun to your head: one sentence to describe your music.  What is it?

Josh Colburn: You know the song that comes on the radio that makes you get a speeding ticket? Like that...

The Deli:  Let’s talk about your latest release or upcoming shows. What can we expect?
 
JC:  We're are playing a show at Czar Bar on Saturday, August 11 with some other great bands: The Chaotic Goods and The New Imperialism (Wichita). It should be a great show. I know I am ready to throw down and I am super pumped to see the other bands perform! We are just starting out, so for us every show is huge -- no matter how big or small.

The Deli:  What does “supporting local music” mean to you?

JC: Of course you can tell your friends about your favorite local bands, but will they actually take the time to go find and listen to them at home? It's better to take your friends and go to a show and then if you like it, support the band! Buy a t-shirt, CD, sticker, death metal coffee mug for mom, or whatever your fancy is. Getting involved in the local music community is a great way to help and easy to do! For example, one of our members writes concert reviews for a local radio station on a volunteer basis. It may not pay anything, but he gets to meet a lot of great musicians in KC and plug them through a popular medium. There really are lots of ways to help out and make sure the music you love gets out there and doesn't die on the vine. 
 
The Deli: Who are your favorite “local” musicians right now?

JC: There are a lot of great local bands in the KC area, so it's really hard to just name a few. Some favorites would be Cherokee Rock Rifle, The Atlantic, The Strive and We Are Voices.


The Deli: Who are your favorite not-so-local musicians right now?
 
JC:  Well, Foo Fighters tops the list, I think for all of us. Also Jimmy Eat World, The Used, The Joy Formidable, Mutemath, Relient K and The Starting Line are all bands that have influenced us. On the other hand, some of the guys listen to bands that we don't emulate as well, such as the Alabama Shakes and Japandroids.

The Deli: What is your ultimate fantasy concert bill to play on?

JC: I don't know if I can speak for everyone, but my personal favorites would be Rockin New Years Eve in New York and the Metro in Chicago. Not lofty, I know. But ever since I was young I've loved the intimate setting of the Metro and the energy of New York. But when it comes down to it, I don't like to be too far removed from our fans during a show.
 
The Deli: Would you rather spend the rest of your life on stage or in the recording studio?
 
JC: Definitely on stage. I've never heard of "Studio Fright" and there's a reason. I love the rush and the energy you feel being connected to other people. It's incredible.

The Deli:
 A music-themed Mount Rushmore.  What four faces are you putting up there and why?

JC: Dave Grohl (do I need to explain?), Jimmy Page (again...), Frank Sinatra (there has to be at least one true gentleman up there) and Johnny Cash (again, I don't think that needs an explanation). These guys are legends or legends in the making. Their music and lives inspire musicians daily.
 
The Deli:  All right, give us the rundown.  Where all on this big crazy web can you be found? 

Twitter - @littleroscoband 
 
The Deli:  Always go out on a high note.  Any last words of wisdom for the Deli audience?

JC: Go out and support local musicians. They're your friends or potential friends and they're working hard for you! Find music you love and don't ever let it die because, as Quincy Jones said, "What a harmonious world it would be if every single person shared a little bit of what they are good at doing." We like to think we are contributing to such a world, but we need everyone to join us!

Rock out with Josh and the rest of Little Rosco this Friday, August 10 at Club 906 in Liberty, or this Saturday, August 11 at Czar Bar. They'll be playing with The Chaotic Goods and The New Imperialism. Show starts at 9 pm.

--Michelle Bacon

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