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With a voice that wouldn’t sound out of place in an old western film or leading a grandiose English Goth group, former Screaming Trees drummer Mark Pickerel evokes a creepy, desolate scorched earth where it sounds as if he’s limped his way to the next neighboring town — barely. As befits a man signed to Chicago’s insurgent country rock label Bloodshot Records, Pickerel emphasizes the “western” vibe with a backing group that plays a sparse, mariachi static that’s determined to sit alongside the works of Tucson, Arizona’s finest, Calexico. Pickerel’s sober and contemplative cover of Bob Dylan’s “One More Cup of Coffee” fits perfectly alongside his originals that occasionally gear up for a victory dance (“She Sleeps Through Sirens”) but mostly march single-mindedly to their fated destination (The seven minute “Deep Inside Your Shade” begins as a slow trudge that slowly percolates to catharsis). Notable guests such as Ian Moore and Heather Duby add vocals and haunting touches. But it’s mostly Pickerel’s death growl that dominates the mood.
Saw these guys warming up at the Sports Center in Yakima. After two songs (Leaving with the Swamptones, Cody's Dream) my wife and I decided to buy the CD. Unfortunately, we couldn't stay for the show, but we ended up with some fresh, cool music.
I saw his two man band play in Fargo, North Dakota. Impressive set of songs. I'd have to say Cherokee Grove and Cody's Dream are my two favorites. Pickerel is a very good story teller.
Top Albums and Songs By Mark Pickerel and His Praying Hands
||Let Me Down Easy||Cody's Dream||5:05||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Graffiti Girl||Snake In The Radio||3:54||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Forest Fire||Snake In The Radio||5:11||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||One More Cup of Coffee||Cody's Dream||4:53||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Your Avenue||Tess||5:49||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Come Home Blues||Snake In The Radio||3:48||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||I Study Horses||Tess||4:05||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Snake In The Radio||Snake In The Radio||4:51||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Man Overboard||Tess||4:51||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Burn the Shrine||Tess||5:11||$0.99||View In iTunes|