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Mic Harrison and the High Score

Great Commotion

(Real Much Records; US: 27 Jul 2010; UK: 27 Jul 2010)

The best of two worlds

Mic Harrison and the High Score play basic, high-energy country rock with verve and enthusiasm. Robbie Trosper’s guitar playing is of the twang ‘n’ jangle variety, while the rhythm section boasts nothing fancy, just one guy whacking the drums real hard and another playing basic bass lines. Know something? It works.


Great Commotion‘s opener “Do You Wrong” throws down the gauntlet, with Harrison’s creaky tenor rising above the pickin’ and wah-wah. “Talk to You Tonight” follows a moodier groove, but the too-rock-for-country vibe remains strong. It’s not all hollering either; quieter songs like “I’m Still Lost” and “Early Grove” are as effective as the rockers, relying on Harrison’s anguished delivery to achieve their effect. That said, we’re never too far from another hoedown rave-up like “Hiram Couples” or “Out of Clinton.”


At its best, Great Commotion channels such energy into convincing declarations of musical intent; but at 14 tracks, the record is a little long and it sags at times. It’s tough to get too mad about a record that offers too many songs, though.

Rating:

DAVID MAINE is a novelist and essayist. His books include The Preservationist (2004), Fallen (2005), The Book of Samson (2006), Monster, 1959 (2008) and An Age of Madness (2012). He has contributed to The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Esquire.com and NPR.com, among other outlets. He is a lifelong music obsessive whose interests range from rock to folk to hip-hop to international to blues. He currently lives in western Massachusetts, where he works in human services. Catch up with his blog, The Party Never Stops, at davidmaine.blogspot.com, or become his buddy on Facebook (or Twitter or Google+ or whatever you prefer) to keep up with reviews and other developments.


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