Whiskey Weed and Trucker Speed | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Whiskey Weed and Trucker Speed
Whiskey Weed and Trucker Speed

Unless "whiskey weed" is an actual thing, and I'm a step or two behind on my illicit substances (which certainly can’t be ruled out), there are some major comma-usage issues in the name of John Purse and Michael Goodis’ new project, Whiskey Weed and Trucker Speed.

However, when a music critic harps on grammar, it implies that the record in question is pretty clear of major flaws -- which is, in fact, the case here. Purse (whose main gig is playing guitar with bar-punk heroes the Dirty Faces) and Goodis have put together a great straight-up rock album laced with tinges of alt-country.

The self-titled record is a 35-minute psyche-y ride split pretty evenly between hard-driving rock a la Dinosaur Jr. and quieter tracks with more complex arrangements. "The Day They Came for Alex ..." features a persistent bass line and blazing guitar solo that wouldn’t be out of place on a Blue Cheer record; it’s immediately followed by "Gravity," a pretty, flowing song about the cyclical nature of time.

The lyrics on the record are successfully vague. They portray an attitude that’s both confident and airy, and don't commit the cardinal sin of rock lyrics (detracting from the music). The delivery is confident, too; at times, Purse sounds strangely like Ozzy, maybe circa No More Tears. But I digress: The point is that it sounds good, and if you like rock music, you might want to check it out.

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