JD Wilkes & The Dirt Daubers “Wild Moon”
The name JD Wilkes will probably be familiar to you as the front man for The Legendary Shack Shakers. This is him and the Dirt Daubers who include his wife, Jessica alongside fellow Shack Shaker Rod Hamdallah. This release sees the band moving from a more acoustic sound to being far rawer and perhaps sharing at least some of the raucous sound of the Shakers. It is still steeped in the Americana, Blues style sound but with an added air of gothic danger.
After the musical intro of “French Harp Hustle” to get us in the mood, we move into “Apples & Oranges” which is a brilliant introduction to the full band and in particular the wonderfully seductive vocals of Jessica. “Wild Moon” keeps that swinging feeling going but is slower, darker, bluesier song.
The band then throw a bit of Vaudeville show man routine in to the mix with “No Rest For The Wicked”. If you could slow it down, this track would be the perfect accompaniment to a burlesque routine. Although the slinky piano of “No More My Love” would perhaps be a better accompaniment for a dance with a slow and seductive tease.
The band return to a more rocking sound on “Angel Crown” where we again see the harp leading the intro to another fine rock n roll song. Whilst “You Know I Love You” is the kind of sassy song that has made Imelda May such a huge star. On the whole, however, the album has a far dirtier and raucous feel to it. This is perfectly shown by “Don’t Thrill Me No More” which adds some southern grit to give the song an added hint of danger. The rawer style of the songs is then shown on the blues based “River Song”. Appropriately the album comes to an end with “God Fearing People” which is a country stomper, designed to spill your beer to.
There is always a danger with this type of unashamedly retro sound that it will appear dated or clichéd. However, JD Wilkes & The Dirt Daubers have managed the same feat as the likes of Imelda May and JD McPherson, by delivering an album which still manages to sound fresh and relevant today. Indeed, given the increasing interest in the ‘vintage’ scene you could argue that their sound is in fact very ‘now’! More important than any of that though, is the fact that this is actually a mighty fine album which is just great fun to listen to and that’s what music should be about.