Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter

I have been familiar with this band by name only for decades but now that one of the members (Sandy - guitar) lives in Las Vegas, I finally have a copy of their record! This 1989 Voxx Records album apparently collects all of the HGD's recording on one 12" LP and no one has of yet released this on CD, which is a damn shame, as this bit of 60's-styled coolness should be heard by all!

Mostly led by Emily's (first names only on the sleeve!) lovely voice, the band creates a terrific batch of jangly pop, often with layers of 12-string guitar, drivin' drums (Rey) and some (uncredited) roaming bass lines. The powerful-pop one-two punch of "Love is Blue" and "Fell For Words..." opens, followed by a rollickin' "Don't Ask My Name (Just Call Me Jack", with its groovy feedback solo and "Gloria" steal. Guitarist Gordeen takes lead vox on the moodier "Somethin' About Today" (really reminds me of something that I can't place - maybe early, melodic Joy Division) and then keyboards join the mix for "Jonathan". They get a bit rougher and noisier in (and add manipulated vocals, keys, and Pink Floyd-ish sounds to) "Out of My Head" and Emily really does get a chance to scream (as she is credited).

Flip over the vinyl and we get a 12-string riffer in "Popular Trend" - nice drawn out feedback/vocals/something - and then there's a version of the Shadows of Knight "Dark Side" (funnily enough, I had just listened to that before putting this on). The Shads are on of my fave bands and that's one of my fave songs by them, so I'm not gonna say that this meets or exceeds their version, but it has a fine intensity all of its own and builds nicely. Another exceptionally catchy guitar riff opens "You're Pushing Me Too Far" and the two ladies get to join in on some fine harmonies on this memorable rocker. They slow down to a swingin' bass groove on "Cat's Got 9", which some sweet 60's melodies, a cool, Caribbean feel, and call'n'response vocals.

Really dug this bit of 60's styled pop quite a bit! Hopefully, people will search this one out. Produced by a member of TV Personalities, too!