A singer’s songwriter and songwriter’s singer reminiscent of John Prine, Warren Zevon, and Rod McKuen, Chip Taylor’s frayed voice, sage style, and laid-back delivery are aged to perfection. This astounding album is as diverse, perverse, and gratifying as his most popular compositions “Wild Thing” and “Angel Of The Morning.”
From profanity to piety, Taylor drops F-bombs and name-drops Jesus with equality, and aplomb, throughout sixteen atmospheric, hypnotic, quixotic, erotic, reverent, romantic, irreverent, seductive, rollicking, frolicking, sublime songs. With wry asides, improvised monologues, and extemporaneous shout-outs, “Be Kind,” “Norrtalje Prison,” and “Phoned In Dead” might’ve been recorded live, on a one-take tightrope, in a Halden, Norway bar. The New Ukrainian “boys” (and girls!) are tight as f**k, nailing every pass!
“Outside The Human Condition” disses a missing fiddler, tongue-in-cheek, but Chip desperately wants her back. “Too Dynamic” sardonically redresses a bemused reviewer (Critics beware!). “Me And Rohillio” and “Passport Blues” are elysian. “Thoughts Of A Child” is delicate, heartbreaking, haunting. “New Things” is a scintillating, titillating, gorgeous meditation on Amanda Johnson’s b(o)(o)bs! “Darkest Day” invokes universal healing following tragic loss. Actually, it’s all f**king perfect!
– Dennis McDonough