September 2013 Local Music Reviews

Local Review: Spell Talk – Rough

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Spell Talk
Rough
Self-Released
Street: 09.26.12
Spell Talk = Black Keys + De Stijl–era White Stripes
It’s too bad Spell Talk broke up following this release, because their down n’ dirty rock n’ roll went straight for the guts and would’ve won a “vintage sound” contest any day. Rough has a distinguished, antique sound that’s the musical equivalent of watching James Dean shave with a straight razor—cool and hot at the same time. Vocals are passionate and sometimes sharp and shouted, but there’s little room for smooth edges in the Beehive State anyway. “Skool Ain’t Cool” has some delicious tones that sound like a mirage—a bit distant, but hopeful and attractive. “Keeps Me Up” has some interesting ooh-la-las and probably represents what would happen if Brian Wilson got baked with The Rolling Stones. Somehow, Spell Talk managed to break down the heat of the Utah desert and re-synthesize it as pure, no-nonsense, head-nodding grooves. I’m sad that we won’t be feeling their heat any longer. –CJ Morgan
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