Tijuana Hercules – Evening Dressings

4 out of 5

Label: Skin Graft Records

Produced by: John Vernon Forbes (recorded by)

A driving, funky chunk of rootsy rock; the relative gentleness of the grinding guitar and singer ‘s snarl may seem rather odd for a Skin Graft Records release, except I just mentioned grinding guitars and snarls, so perhaps not. But while you might find some U.S. Maple and Yona-Kit mixed in there, it’s surprisingly palatable stuff; Tijuana Hercules are about a groove, and not the deconstruction of those other references. And yet… this belongs. Evening Dressings is a cycle of tracks which hammer on a particular boogie, pushed and pulled at in two extended bookend tracks – the opener rather playful, the latter going more punishing on the drums – and then doing shorter variations on the tracks inbetween. That it never strays too far from this is where it starts to fit into the no wave shuffle, but the way the group curtails the discordance of that scene is what keeps it unique – shooting from a blues shuffle on through 90s noise rock, and then into an amusing been-there-done-that post rock sigh earned by some scenester elders just doing their own damn thing.