Artist: Dan Stuart With Twin Tones
Album: Marlowe’s Revenge
Label: Fluff and Gravy
Release Date: 02/20/2016
Dan Stuart has always been an agitator and an insurgent, dating back to his stint with Green On Red, a band that trolled the darker corners of punk and Americana while managing to make an interesting hybrid from both. Now living in Oaxaca Mexico, he uses his adventures as an expatriate as the basis for his current music. Consequently, Marlowe’s Revenge becomes a sequel of sorts to his last album, Deliverance of Marlowe Billings. Yet, it’s also an odd brew — feisty, tempestuous and conveyed through both a snarl and a sneer.
Stuart’s template is often quite obvious. “Soy Un Hombre” boasts the icy, intimidating veneer of the late Lou Reed, while “Hola Grapa” and “Elena” convey the kind of gritty attitude that generally accompanies an upraised middle finger. Indeed, the make-up of Marlowe’s Revenge appears to be the product of unsettled circumstance. Fortunately then, songs like “Name Hog” and “The Knife” make Stuart’s assertive attitude all too obvious.
There’s nothing here that bows to accessibility or amiability; indeed, the entire album is built on edgy agitation and a stalwart stance. It’s actually refreshing to find Stuart is still unbowed after all these years, holding true to the spirit of Green On Red while varying the hues in the process.
– Lee Zimmerman