The Sadies

The stats alone nearly boggle the mind: 41 songs, including numbers by Roger Miller, Robbie Robertson, the late Syd Barrett, Flat Duo Jet Dexter Romwebber and Texas Playboys Bob Wills and Tommy Duncan. And 23 guests such as Jon Spencer, Neko Case, Mekon/Waco Brother Jon Langford, The Band's Garth Hudson, Jayhawk Gary Louris, Kelly Hogan and fellow Canadians Blue Rodeo. So this two-disc concert set has to either be a train wreck or a show for the history books, right?

Nah. Notable as the event is, the Sadies' cheeky wit and loving, rooted irreverence infuse more alternatives into the country/roots music realm than most every band profiled in the pages of No Depression (and the sum of many of them combined). Hence this is a loosey-goosey über-romp that's two tons of fun. File it in between your favorite beer and your pot stash, ready to slap on and ramp up the volume whenever you hit that woozy sweet spot, and damned if it doesn't get yer ya-yas out like it's the best rock concert ever. Echoes of The Ventures, Bo Diddley, Johnny Cash, The Byrds, Chuck Berry, Elvis, Loretta Lynn, and Dylan meets the Glimmer Twins ("Talking Over") or Dylan meets Neil Young (Louris' "Tailspin") as well as a host of others swirl through the set, but the glue that holds these two party platters together is the zesty, inebriating spirit of The Sadies themselves. And it's only Volume One.

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Rob Patterson

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