Category: romans records fest

CATL. “This Shakin’ House” 2014. CATL. Records. We got another chance to see the most excellent Toronto-based punk-blues, southern-fried Americana rockin’ rhythm and blues duo perform this past weekend at Romanus Records Fest in Indianapolis (we saw them play at the Fest last year and again earlier this year at Boone and Crockett here in Milwaukee). Either Chris Banta or Warner Swopes from Brother O’Brother/Romanus Records snapped this photo of the crowd during catl’s set: we are in the front left hand corner, looking awfully serious LOL. 

This Shakin’ House is catl’s fourth release and I believe the first as a bonafide two-piece, with “catl” (aka Jamie Fleming) on guitar and vocals and Sarah Kirkpatrick on vocals and drums (plus some signature corny dad jokes of which she pulled out a couple in Indy). It’s a honky-tonk blues stomping album with some really excellent tracks: my favorites are the Bo-Diddley-esque “Gateway Blues,” the hypnotic Junior Kimbrough-styled “Shakin’ House Blues” that has some great blues harmonica and the floor-shaking “Save Myself.”  “Save Myself” is a great example of the comparison I’ve made between Jamie and Jon Spencer – lots of great “YEAH!” lyrical punctuations; I believe catl performed with Spencer recently while he was on tour with his HITMakers.

Death Valley Girls “Darkness Rains” 2018. Limited edition yellow with red splatter, Suicide Squeeze Records. We picked up what I believe is DVG’s third LP this past weekend at Romanus Records Fest in Indianapolis where they headlined the jam-packed (15 bands!) evening lineup. Hard driving, punkish garage rock with nods to the darkness of goth and touches of neo-psychedelia via organ and lead guitarist Larry Schemel (who on stage was kinda relegated to the background, allowing the Girls to shine up front, mostly with huge smiles on their faces during the entire set). 

We were able to grab the set-list, excellently illustrated: 

DVG played several tracks from Darkness Rains, many of them my favorite on the album. They led off with “Abre Camino,” an intensely dark and throbbing scorcher that is the first track on Side B. From Darkness Rains also is the high octane rocker “Street Justice,”  the hypnotic “More Dead,” “Disaster (Is What We’re After)” which features Iggy Pop eating a hamburger while jamming out to the song’s beat in its video (spoiler: he clearly loves ketchup), and my top track, “Wear Black” upon which lead singer, guitarist and keyboardist Bonnie Bloomgarden pulls out some amazing psychedelic organ.