12 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Ike Reilly’s the kind of guy you watch from a distance. If his lyrics are to be taken literally, the man is a self-destructive mess and the kind of in-your-face sensationalist who views every potential friend as a potential opponent. Which makes for some exciting old-school rock n’ roll. Reilly may have started out a kid from small-town America — Libertyville, IL — but he’s grown into a big city con man who uses guitar riffs for muscle and his fast-talking mouth to weave in and out of trouble on a regular basis. With each album, Reilly never runs out of wasted nights to celebrate or enemies to condemn. The acoustic-based “Broken Parakeet Blues” shows a compassionate side to the American soldier, but Reilly’s mostly interested in sex and drugs as a daily regimen. “Valentine’s Day in Juarez,” the junkyard blues of “Let’s Get Friendly” and “The Nighttime is a Liar” are noir-capers where sin and shadows remain sacred. Reilly howls like a committed new Dylan, but sometimes it’s the simple primal locomotion of his backing group that makes the loudest and most pointed statement (“I Hear the Train”).

EDITORS’ NOTES

Ike Reilly’s the kind of guy you watch from a distance. If his lyrics are to be taken literally, the man is a self-destructive mess and the kind of in-your-face sensationalist who views every potential friend as a potential opponent. Which makes for some exciting old-school rock n’ roll. Reilly may have started out a kid from small-town America — Libertyville, IL — but he’s grown into a big city con man who uses guitar riffs for muscle and his fast-talking mouth to weave in and out of trouble on a regular basis. With each album, Reilly never runs out of wasted nights to celebrate or enemies to condemn. The acoustic-based “Broken Parakeet Blues” shows a compassionate side to the American soldier, but Reilly’s mostly interested in sex and drugs as a daily regimen. “Valentine’s Day in Juarez,” the junkyard blues of “Let’s Get Friendly” and “The Nighttime is a Liar” are noir-capers where sin and shadows remain sacred. Reilly howls like a committed new Dylan, but sometimes it’s the simple primal locomotion of his backing group that makes the loudest and most pointed statement (“I Hear the Train”).

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