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Cherry Pop

Title - Double Dare, Vols. 1 & 2 [2CD]
Artist - Gary Lucas & Peter Willems

For those not in the know, Gary Lucas & Peter Willems a.k.a. Double Dare make a duo that digs deep in blues related song material while crossing bridges to jazz, rock and americana.

Gary and Peter were introduced through a radio show host in the Netherlands, and from there they discovered their musical interests overlapped.

This then opened up a whole world of musical possibilities and soon they found themselves jamming on ideas. Thus, they released Double Dare, Vol. 1 digitally first and now the just-released Double Dare, Vols. 1 & 2 CD (also available on digital and as a 2LP, two volume set July 15th, 2022) is the complete proof of their fruitful expedition.

Vol. 1:
1. I’m So Glad
2. Spoonful
3. Dance of Destiny
4. Hey, Mr. Rain
5. Melancholy Serenade
6. Fare Thee Well

This musically delicious, heartfelt and simply gorgeous new album opens on the Delta blues-styling of I’m So Glad (originally recorded back in 1931 and made famous by rock band Cream) and the Willie Dixon blues classic Spoonful and follows those up seamlessly with the upright bass-led instrumental Dance of Destiny, the countrified twang, and Robert Plant-esque tones of the lesser known Velvet Underground song Hey, Mr. Rain, the first volume rounding out on the light, airy textures of TV comedian Jackie Gleason’s Melancholy Serenade, coming to a close on the quietly frenetic, and yet always controlled, heartfelt and deep of reach within Willems’s breathy balladry on Fare Thee Well.

Vol. 2:
1. Thin Ice
2. Scarlett Town
3. Der Leiermann (solo)
4. Harem Man
5. Better Than You Were
6. Der Leiermann
7. Verklärte Kristallnacht

The second volume opens on the melodic rhythms of the upright bass-led Thin Ice and an incredibly sinister rendition of country singer Gillian Welch’s Scarlett Town and backs those up with the hauntingly acoustic, and solo Der Leiermann (inclusive of Willems singing the piece by Schubert in a somewhat icy tone), the countrified twang and slide guitar then come to the fore on Harem Man (which Lucas recorded before with Jeff Buckley), the pulsating atmospheric Better Than You Were (the latter two both sung by Willems), rounding out with another, longer, fuller version of Der Leiermann, closing on the magnificent, aurally sculptured sonic resonance of Verklärte Kristallnacht.

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