[2 October 2006]
PopMatters Contributing Editor
If you’re the former bassist/vocalist for one of the most influential metal bands in history, and are stuck for an idea of what to do next in your musical career, what do you do? Well, if you’re former Carcass member Jeff Walker, you round up a bunch of your buddies and record a country album. Wait… Jeff, dude, we’re kidding! You’ve got to give the guy credit, though, he got a bunch of credible guest musicians like Faith No More’s Billy Gould, H.I.M.‘s Ville Vallo, Anathema’s Danny Cavanagh, former Carcass mates (!) Bill Steer and Ken Owen, not to mention a host of others. He has good taste in songs, such as Johnny Cash’s “The Man Comes Around”, Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World”, and Hank Williams’s “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”. And he and his band obviously are having a blast performing such tunes as the loosey-goosey, stoner-fied “I Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)” and a shockingly straight-faced cover of John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High”, but while his tongue-in-cheek sentiment is more than obvious, one can’t help but feel a little discouraged that someone partly responsible for such indisputable classics as Necroticism: Descanting the Insalubrious and Heartwork could turn into a novelty act. Oh, what the hell. The music’s fun, the album artwork is cool, and that “Rocky Mountain High” cover is actually pretty darn likeable.