By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
The Monco Poncho's new record, Miserable Man, is an album by four men who know exactly who they are—an act that is passionately filling the surf-rock void in the Dallas music community. For filling such a weird niche, their popularity is somewhat baffling. With this new disc, though, it's almost certain that their popularity will increase—along with Clint Eastwood movie rentals on Netflix.
For the new disc, The Monco Poncho enlisted producer Salim Nourallah to run the show—a wise call, as his production style is lent nicely to the tone of this record. "Borrowed Time" has moments of sunny '60s pop and even briefly nods to CCR—until the chorus quickly reins it back into the disc's uniform style.
That's the thing about this album: Whether to its benefit or its detriment, the record's style is focused, precise and somewhat contrived. At its foundation, though, is a collection of well-written songs from frontman Nick Durham. Problem is, these songs would be just as good—if not better—in just about any other genre.
Still, Miserable Man is easily the best locally released spaghetti-Western/surf-rock album you'll hear all year. You just have to really be in the mood.