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Modern Saloon Songs

Holly Golightly
God Don't Like It
(Damaged Goods)

The first time I heard this recording, I thought it sounded like rock music from the 1950's with a female lead singer. With twangy guitars and just a slight lo-fidelity recording quality, it could easily sound like something from a few eras back. After hearing it a couple more times, I still felt some of the same things, but there is a definite edge to the songs that plants it firmly into the modern pop/rock world without sounding like really much of anything else.

Formerly of the Headcoatees, Golightly has played shows with Sleater Kinney and Rocket From The Crypt, and although it may not be readily apparent why (as she sounds nothing like either of the above groups), she definitely has the attitude in her vocals down. The album starts out with the surf-rock sounding "I Heart You" and she immediately lays down the swank on singing duties. On the very next track "Feel Something," the group goes into more of a blues feel with bursts of harmonica and almost dueling vocals between Golightly and guitarist Dan Melchior.

The album goes more of the smokey lounge route on "Pretty Good Love" with a mellow mellow upright bass lead and more subdued vocals. There's even a ragged guitar solo about halfway through that makes you feel like you're barging in on more of an authentic jam session. Possibly the best track on the album, "Here Beside You," takes sort of the same laid-back approach and sounds like a trip-hop track without the electronic beats. Hearing a track like it sung to you in person may just melt you to your seat.

With its bluesy, rough swagger, God Don't Like It might appeal to fans of the Geraldine Fibbers (minus the sometimes screaming vocals) or even fans of the Squirrel Nut Zippers (minus all the horns). As a vocalist, Holly Golightly is super emotive and can pull off sly, sultry, and even snarky. A great album from a relatively obscure artist.

Rating: 7.25