Peter Case - "The Case Files" CD Review (Alive Records) ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Peter Case - "The Case Files" CD Review (Alive Records)

DOWNLOAD: Peter Case - "Round Trip Stranger Blues"
Peter Case - (Give Me) One More Mile by alivenaturalsound

Peter Case - 'The Case Files' CD Review (Alive Records)Bomp/Alive describes The Case Files as a collection of “demos, out-takes, one live shot & other rarities recorded between 1985 and 2010”. This description doesn’t do the disc justice as this is a pretty solid collection of tracks rather than the half-finished demos and cast-offs found in archival compilations by other artists (maybe Peter Case could give some pointers to whomever is managing the Marc Bolan/T Rex estate).

As this disc spans Case’s solo career post-The Plimsouls, there are some expected stylistic jumps. The music on The Case Files include: roots-rock, a heavy dose of blues, “Woody Guthrie style” social protest songs and a hint of the indie power-pop of The Plimsouls. The traditional blues number “Milk Cow Blues” was recorded live and the remaining tracks are a mix of full band studio performances and Case playing solo acoustic. The songs are a mixture of newly heard originals, early versions of songs that ended up on one of Case’s solo discs and covers of Alexandro Escovedo (“The End”), Bob Dylan (“Black Crow Blues”) and Rolling Stones (“Good Time Bad Times”) songs

The disc starts out strong with the upbeat root-rock tune “(Give Me) One More Mile” before heading into a social indictment of the past Republican administration with “Let’s Turn This Thing Around”. Musically, this later song is somewhat odd as it includes a host of sound effects (crowd noise, safety alarm noise, animal noises, etc.) along with some crazy synthesizer effects, courtesy of Stan Ridgeway. A chunk of the lyrics from this song are repeated on “The Ballad of the Minimum Wage” but on this later song, Case’s vocals are delivered beat-poetry style. Case also uses this spoken word delivery style on the other working class anthem on the disc “Kokomo Prayer Vigil”.

While there is nothing too ‘hard-edged’ on the disc, “Good Time, Bad Times” and “The End” are both bash ‘em out rock tunes. “Anything (Closing Credits)” (which sounds completely different than the version on Case’s 2006 release Torn Again) and “Trusted Friend” capture the pop sparkle of The Plimsouls and this first track features Eddie Munoz and the later was described by Case as a long lost track in between the Plimsouls and his solo career. Lastly, the disc also contains a stripped-down, melancholy version of “Steel Strings #1” (which features T. Bone Burnett) which was given a high-gloss sheen for Case’s first solo disc.

The Case Files Track List:
1. (Give Me) One More Mile
2. Let's Turn This Thing Around
3. Anything (Closing Credits)
4. The End
5. Good Times, Bad Times
6. Milkcow Blues
7. Kokomo Prayer Vigil
8. The Ballad of the Minimum Wage
9. Steel Strings (Demonstration)
10. Trusted Friend
11. Black Crow Blues
12. Round Trip Stranger Blues

Peter Case 2011 Fall Tour
Sep. 9 - Vagabond Blues, Palmer, AK
Sep. 10 - Out North Theatre, Anchorage, AK
Sep. 14 - The Geomatic Attic, South Lethbridge, AB, Canada
Sep. 15 - The Palomino, Calgary, AB , Canada
Sep. 16 - The Roxy Theatre, Saskatoon, SK Canada
Sep. 30 The Record Collector Concert Series, Bordentown, NJ
Oct. 1 (12:30PM) - Bridge Street Live, Collinsville, CT
Oct. 1 (6PM) - The Turning Point, Piermont, NY
Oct. 2 - Roots Hoot House Concerts, Peace Dale, RI
Oct. 4 - Stage On Herr, Harrisburg, PA
Oct. 5 - Thunderbird Café, 4023 Butler Street, Lawrenceville, PA
Oct. 6 - Rumba Café, Columbus, OH
Oct. 8 - Trinity House Theatre, Livonia, MI
Oct. 9 - Columbia Street West, Ft. Wayne, IN
Oct. 10 - WYCE Fall Hat Trick Series,Grand Rapids, MI
Oct. 11 - Beachland Ballroom, Cleveland, OH
Oct. 12 - The Good Neighborhood @ The Sportsman, Buffalo, NY
Oct. 13 - Lovin' Cup, Rochester, NY
Oct. 14 - Buffalo Film Festival Opening Night, The Screening Room Cinema Café, Amherst, NY
Oct. 15 - This Ain't Hollywood, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Oct. 16 - Hugh's Room, Toronto, ON
Oct. 20 - Bayport BBQ, Bayport, MN
Oct. 21 - Lee's Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis, MN
Oct. 22 - House Of Righteous Music, Madison, WI
Oct. 23 - Old Town School of Folk Music, Chicago, IL

The closest show is Saturday, Oct. 1 at The Turning Point, 468 Piermont Ave. Piermont, NY. The show starts at 6PM and tickets are $20.

Peter Case