Hear The Track HereThose who know me well know the queasy face I adopt when faced with folk. It has never been a style I went for even when I was young and deluded all them beards and serious s***, no ta. I have, however, an abiding love for true folk music, and often go out of my way to grab chunks of it. The ethnic kind, ya know. There was more of a trace of that in Chris Rea (December 2006), the last Duelling Winos track I reviewed. Essentially it was what saved the track from my usual deadpan folk putdown, see the one thing the Duelling Winos do do well it's serve up a wicked lyric.
With an opening phrase that is a dead ringer for the opening chords of Sloop John B, Year Of The Wino quickly establishes its folk credentials quickly becoming a kind of jig/reel that is highly reminicent of The Pogues. Except with added rough edges if you can imagine that. Definitely about lo-fi as you can get, but that is really the point of such music and - as the man used to say - it's a toe tapper. Percussion is supplied by what sound like castanets but could equally well just be spoons and very effective it is too.
I know I always tell you to read the lyrics while listening to tracks but Duelling Winos tracks are so worth the extra effort and Year Of The Wino delivers its usual complement of smart lines. The Pogues reference again pops up because of the way the vocals are delivered; that flat, atonal drawl that's not always in tune but sounds like it fits anyway. Because of that, I think a lot of people probably wouldn't be drawn to this track, but hey with folk that was always the way. I'm sure the Duelling Winos couldn't give a rats arse anyway because they are too busy having fun...
Excellent bit o' the jig. Duelling Winos style.