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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 140 - 02/21/08

Gringo Bandido & The Fab Four
Beggars Blues
Borderline Records

Gringo Bandido & The Fab Four is new to me, but chief gringo is ex-Camaros (check our review of their Glad, Evil And Bad album) headman Christian Sandaker (vocals, guitar), while the fab four count his brother Carl Fredrik Sandaker (guitar, vocals), Ivar Eidem (organ, mandolin - known from a lot of bands back in the 1980s, pop combos Diamond Dogs and Matchstick Sun to name a couple), Jens Standerholen (drums) and Lars Ivar Borg (bass - also The Long Walk, plus contributing to a number of Norwegian recordings, f.i. for Sivert Høyem's records).

Gringo Bandido & The Fab Four (from now: GB&TFF) play some sort of gypsy (Sandaker mentioned 'taterblod' - which is the 'blood of the Norwegian Romani' - in one interview) drenched garage country. Beggars Blues is a 5 song EP with rootsy, late 1960s/early 1970s styled rock. Greasy, dirty and indeed charmingly catchy garage rawk. Blues based, but blues in a style even my ears find alright.

Opening track "The Game" has neat guitar playing and guitar sound, which is valid for the entire EP. Sandaker's vocals is also on the cool side, fitting perfectly for the music, with its rasping, distorted, and honest feel. "Lonesome Waltz" is another cool song. "Light Me Up" is more of the raw, but well tempered hardness and elasticity. The title track and the closing "Carlos Country Club" are a more trad, stomping songs, but also quite tough sounding ones. When JP reviewed the Camaros album he mentioned Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band as a reference, and it still is a relevant comparison.

An interesting debut EP. Guess they're able to create blasting and sweaty live performances in smaller clubs.

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