Bold Displays of Imperfection
On their second album, the Willys continued to push the confines of both country and punk.
On their second album, the Willys continued to push the confines of both country and punk. BDI is an exuberant, noisy, custom job of mutant string-band sensibilities tricked out with crafty original songwriting (filled with joy, sorrow, dementia, and all points in-between), and live-style, energetic (we're talkin' caffeine-addled here, my friends) performances. They careen through all the turns with a sexy new sense of self-assurance, creating the soundtrack to that movie in our brains where Robert Mitchum stars as Joey Chitwood driving a nitro-injected chicken truck while Bettie Page rides shotgut for comic relief.
BDI refines their sweet cacophony of mandolin, banjo & spitfire guitar at the hands of Nancy Rideout---check out her killer meditative 5 minute instrumental "Spaghetti," the muscular bass of Mike Luke and rattle trap drums, but nothing can keep them earthbound once the vocals kick in. Front and center on this one is the jumpy fiddle playing of Rachel Ferro who threatens to steal the whole show, gliding effortlessly from forlorn to playful and back again, ever the perfect and polite accomplice.
All of this dexterity would be rather pointless if it weren't for the leap in Kim's songwriting. Love, loss, dizzying highs and gut-dropping lows (look no further than "Sky Above Me"--inspired by the Dorothy Allison novel Bastard Out of Carolina) or the song about a rest stop in Ohio ("Brady's Leap"). There's even a few pop-fueled gems that, if the world were at all fair and just, would have Kim Docter's stylings mentioned in the same breath as Loretta Lynn and Exene Cervenka.
Bolder, stronger, faster. This Moonshine Willy bolts fast out of the blocks and never looks back. Rearview mirrors are for suckers. Keep your eyes on the horizon.
Look At Her
Fork In The Road
Sky Above Me