The enigmatic Kevin Coyne has been making albums for years, and is, according to Rolling Stone, "... a peculiar blues singer, even by relaxed standards...", whatever that means! "Room Full Of Fools", which is Coyne's 38th album, is an amalgam of blues, folk, soul and lots of originality. The end result often sounds like a fusion between Captain Beefheart and Pere Ubu which has been given the Fat Possum treatment, if
you can imagine such a beast. The basic song structures are fairly simple, often driven by an incessant pounding beat, and all overlaid by Coyne's vocals.
"Room Full Of Fools" is one of those albums that gets under your skin in a non-irritating way. It makes it hard for you to ignore the album, and the best tracks ("Sugar Turning Sour", "Candlelight, Take Your Pain Away" and so on) are actually very good. The rest of the tracks are never less than interesting, and any song that manages to rhyme Mantovani with salami ("God Watches") scores highly in my book. But is it blues? Well, if you class Captain Beefheart as blues, then it does have some blues content, albeit of a more rock oriented nature. For more information check out the RUF records web site (www.rufrecords.de).
This review is copyright © 2001 by Gordon Baxter, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.
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