Lee Hazlewood – Cake or Death (Four Music)

I have to say Lee Hazlewood is not someone I’d actively seek out to listen to. He has a croony old country style, and lyrics focusing on day to day occurrences, plus there’s the occasional Scandinavian or German verse thrown in. But this album sounded interesting, so I gave it a listen. It’s a self-confessed swansong – the seventy seven year old singer-songwriter wanted to tie up all his loose strings with various musicians by working with them all on one record. Each song on ‘Cake Or Death’ has Yanky rock and roll and satirical storytelling at its core, tracks varying from ‘Please Come to Boston’, a “heard it all before” love song about long distance relationships, to ‘Fred Freud’, a strange track combining oom-pah-pah verses and classical music samples with comic lyrics – the comments of psychiatrist. Lining up ‘The First Song of the Day’ and ‘White People Thing’ has the listener half way to a Quentin Tarantino soundtrack. ‘Anthem’ very frankly discusses Hazlewood’s political opinions – “I never did vote Republican” he sings. He collaborates with Neil Diamond’s guitarist for a new recording of ‘These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ – undoubtedly the most  famous song Hazelwood has ever written – and produces a great sound with  airy vocals, guitar and brass. Overall, ‘Cake Or Death’ is an interesting album with tracks that all tie together well. [AW/CMU]

Release Date: 4 Dec

One thought on “Lee Hazlewood – Cake or Death (Four Music)

  1. Let’s make sure and note that the big guitar on Lee’s new recording of “These Boots Are Made For Walking” is legendary Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, Duane Eddy.
    Lee and Duane have been collaborators for nearly fifty years.
    The first record Lee ever produced was by “Jimmy and Duane”, Jimmy Dellbridge and Duane Eddy, who worked as a duo for a short while. Duane and Lee continued on working to create the unique “twangy” sound that led to a string of instrumental hit records, the number of which that has yet to be challenged .

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