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Red Cities

Some of the tracks on Red Cities are so vividly redolent of a sense of place, it could almost be the soundtrack for a series of imaginary J.G Ballard travelogues

Rating: 9 / 12

Colin Carberry, 31 Jul 2002



Best known for his work with grunge/blues racket-merchants Come, Chris Brokaw’s debut solo album is an intriguing, instrumental curio, that won’t see him guesting on any Wyclef records, but might well propel him up the bill at All Tomorrow’s Parties.

Inspired, apparently, by the scarlet sheen that towns appear to give off as you approach from the desert in the evening, some of the tracks on Red Cities are so vividly redolent of a sense of place, it could almost be the soundtrack for a series of imaginary J.G Ballard travelogues. ‘The Fields (part II)’, for example, is a spindly, agoraphobic, old steel-mill town that threatens all sorts of creepy infamy until it finally caves in on itself. ‘Dresden Promenade’ is a noirish stroll through somewhere with a lot of ghosts. While ‘Bath House’ calls to mind the tough Tex-Mex of ‘Touch Of Evil’. Throw in a heartbreaking take on Burt and Hal’s ‘The Look Of Love’, and prepare to add (in pencil and lower case) Brukaw’s record to the honour roll of brave and imaginative American LPs released this year.
Rating: 9 / 12

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REVIEW: 06 Sep 2002

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