“Hard Werken Fucked Over Man/The Reckoning” (Gary Lucas)

Beginning with concert vocals and sustained by a looping, minimal blues ostinato, the trax ends with backwards guitar. Disheveling the live/studio distinction, Lucas makes clear that work pervades stage and studio. Over the ostinato, various guitar solos are deployed (from Tubescreamer-like distortion to wah pedal to tremolo bar to tape manipulation), voicing these works as just technical variations. At two separate moments, all of this is interrupted (by “The Reckoning[s],” one assumes) with its alternating low, high, and midrange repetitions of the same phrase with an open-string drone. Life figured, at its base, as perpetual work. Homespun and high-end reflect this.

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