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Review: The Gimps – Bath Salts

The Gimps Bath Salts

The Gimps Bath SaltsBy Keith Evanson

Methamphetamine, heartbreak, and crime. The second LP from the country/folk/southern rock-inspired band, The Gimps, invites you to the depressing world of the rural south.

Band members Johnny Nova and Chris Matule don’t even live in the same region of the U.S (Nova lives in Atlanta, Matule lives in San Francisco.)

They record music in their own home studios, and send each other mixes via FTP. The large distance between the two band mates can be easily heard within the mostly muddled mixes of ideas and sounds.

The band has yet to find a distinguished sound. “If Had Money I’d Buy Her a Tooth” features a guitar riff that sounds like it could have been stolen from an early White Stripes demo. The track, “Tulsa”, sounds inspired by three chord country made famous by Hank Williams. Listeners who are already alienated by the band’s country aesthetic, won’t find refuge in the southern rock overtones either.

Bath Salts is a record that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Each song tells a story that lyrically sounds depressing, or funny, depending on how cynical are. It’s a shame that the stories lack substance, and staying power. The songs go in one ear and right out the other, and leave you feeling rather salty for having listened to all eighteen tracks.