10 Songs, 35 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

As if Left Lane Cruiser wasn't capable of stirring up a loud and dirty enough version of the blues, the group invited James Leg of Black Diamond Heavies along for the fun. Since LLC dusts it up with slide guitar (Frederick “Joe” Evans IV) and drums (Brenn Beck), adding keyboard demon Leg and his brand of feral soul to the mix makes for an exhilarating, combustible ride. Both duos grind out the muddiest, most menacing kind of blues, and on Painkillers LLC gives a tip of the trucker hat to its inspirations. The group starts off, in fact, with Junior Kimbrough’s “Sad Days Lonely Nights,” with Leg’s organ (and voice) laying a ragged howl over Evans’ unhinged, swamp-blues slide guitar. It's a thrilling, unholy alliance. From the gale-force power of Hound Dog Taylor’s “She’s Gone” to the darkly terrifying tones of Willie Dixon’s “Little Red Rooster” and the piano-inflected boogie of Robert Johnson’s “Ramblin’ on My Mind,” Painkillers offers up the kind of messy good times that only happen in the morning's wee hours, deceptively delivered in a tidy, tiny package of 10 songs. Credit the raw, raging harmonica to Detroit’s Harmonica Shah.

EDITORS’ NOTES

As if Left Lane Cruiser wasn't capable of stirring up a loud and dirty enough version of the blues, the group invited James Leg of Black Diamond Heavies along for the fun. Since LLC dusts it up with slide guitar (Frederick “Joe” Evans IV) and drums (Brenn Beck), adding keyboard demon Leg and his brand of feral soul to the mix makes for an exhilarating, combustible ride. Both duos grind out the muddiest, most menacing kind of blues, and on Painkillers LLC gives a tip of the trucker hat to its inspirations. The group starts off, in fact, with Junior Kimbrough’s “Sad Days Lonely Nights,” with Leg’s organ (and voice) laying a ragged howl over Evans’ unhinged, swamp-blues slide guitar. It's a thrilling, unholy alliance. From the gale-force power of Hound Dog Taylor’s “She’s Gone” to the darkly terrifying tones of Willie Dixon’s “Little Red Rooster” and the piano-inflected boogie of Robert Johnson’s “Ramblin’ on My Mind,” Painkillers offers up the kind of messy good times that only happen in the morning's wee hours, deceptively delivered in a tidy, tiny package of 10 songs. Credit the raw, raging harmonica to Detroit’s Harmonica Shah.

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About Left Lane Cruiser

Specializing in a raw hillbilly punk-blues style that roars like a tweaking modal chain saw, Left Lane Cruiser is a two-piece band originally comprising Frederick "Joe" Evans IV on slide guitar and Brenn Beck on drums. The pair came out of Fort Wayne, Indiana, but their sound had the swampy feel of North Mississippi hill country blues à la Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside, with a good dose of snarling garage punk tossed into the mix. A self-released album, Gettin' Down on It, was released on the group's own Hillgrass Bluebilly Records in 2006, and the following year they signed to Alive Records. Bring Yo' Ass to the Table appeared from the imprint in 2008, followed by All You Can Eat in 2009 and Junkyard Speed Ball in 2011. Teaming with James Leg, keyboardist with Black Diamond Heavies, the band released Painkillers in 2012, which also featured guest spots from bassist Jim Diamond and blues harpist Harmonica Shah. Rock Them Back to Hell! followed in 2013. The release of 2015's Dirty Spliff Blues saw Left Lane Cruiser going through some lineup changes; Brenn Beck left the group and Pete Dio stepped in as their new drummer, while the group also expanded into a trio with the addition of Joe Bent, who played bass and an electrified skateboard. In 2016, the band released the collection Beck in Black, which featured eight fan favorites along with six previously unreleased tracks. In 2017, Left Lane Cruiser were down to the duo of Evans and Dio when they released the album Claw Machine Wizard, which also featured guest keyboardist Jason Davis. ~ Steve Leggett

ORIGIN
Fort Wayne, IN
GENRE
Rock
FORMED
2004

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