Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Les Jaguars - Appalachesdotdotdot
artworkThis is the reformed Quebec band from the sixties, with new recordings released in 1996. Born again in the early nineties, the line up includes bassist Oliver Martin of Les Baronics. Mostly in a Euro vein, but accented with great whammy and some surf.
Picks: Appalaches, Jaguar Shake, Pipeline, Galaxy M87, Mer Morte, Soliel Rouge, Guitar Boogie Shuffle, Guitar Strip, Funiculi-Funicula, Supersonic Twist, Solitude, Snowboard, Maple Leaf Rag, Casse-Noisette, Sealed With A Kiss, Mer Morte (version originale), Supersonic Twist (version originale), Quananiche Twist

Track by Track Review

Appalaches dotdotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf (Instrumental)

With influences from "The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly," this fine track displays cowboy rhythms, warm whammy, and an overall sound that drifts between spaghetti western, Euro guitar, and surf. "Appalaches" slithers with a sinewy echoed sustain and big sound.

Jaguar Shake dotdotdot
Euro Whammy (Instrumental)

"Jaguar Shake" is very European sounding, with a British beat and echoed guitar. Lots of twang and a playful riff, and just maybe a touch of rockabilly.

Pipeline dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf (Instrumental)

This is a big whammy interpretation of the surf archetype. Slightly slow and deliberate, "Pipeline" sports a big dramatic sound and a slippery feel. Quite cool.

Galaxy M87 dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Space (Instrumental)

This features really cool filtered and echoed guitar, which gives it an eerie space sound. "Galaxy M87" is a slow number with a distant power feel.

Mer Morte dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf Dirge (Instrumental)

Awash in the moody sadness of a watery grave, "Mer Morte" is like a sponge bath for your soul. It straddles the fence dividing fifties romantic strolls and the Shadows, overlaid with the undulation of shorebreak on an infinitely calm day. Misty and bright.

Soliel Rouge dotdotdot
Euro Country (Instrumental)

"Soliel Rouge" lays down a Nashville kinda sound, with a country melody and a nearly lap steel guitar delivery. Melodic mid tempo coolness.

Guitar Boogie Shuffle dotdotdot
Rockabilly (Instrumental)

The Virtues' classic instro is slowed down and driven by even more echo. The reduced pace gives it a smoother, almost slithery sound. Precise and rhythmic, and pretty darn nice.

Guitar Strip dotdotdot
Country Rock (Instrumental)

This is an oddly metered tune played in a rock style against a damped second guitar rhythm pattern. A little country, a little rock, a touch of Paul Johnson's eighties sound, and quite intriguing.

Funiculi-Funicula dotdotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf (Instrumental)

This long overlooked standard finds sparkling new life in the guitar instrumental format. Dry chops behind big sustained echoed guitar over a straight rock rhythm section. It's simple, but really quite effective.

Supersonic Twist dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Monkeying with pickslides up and down the neck to simulate jets, "Supersonic Twist" eventually yields to a riff rocker essentially based on Little Richards' "Lucille." The frantic echoed break sets it apart.

Solitude dotdotdot
Mediterranean (Instrumental)

Sorta choppy, kinda fifties slow dance smooth, loudly echoed, and sporting a very pretty melody that's just far enough off the norm for this genre to make it interesting. The double picked breaks give it an almost Mediterranean feel.

Snowboard dotdotdot
Whammy Rock (Instrumental)

"Snowboard" is a fairly non-melodic standard bit of rock, yet more friendly than that might imply. Bit's of "Surf Rider," and cool dry chops with whammy leads. No, this is not the Ann Murray hit, thank you very much!

Maple Leaf Rag dotdotdot
Rockabilly Rag (Instrumental)

Scott Joplin's "Maple Leaf Rag" is adapted to guitar combo format with considerable skill, delivering infectious fun. Very cool. The Bat Man-like chords here and there are tasty too.

Casse-Noisette dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Rock (Instrumental)

B. Bumble and the Stingers' "Nut Rocker" with the piano extracted and heavily echoed guitar taking the lead. Very fun!

Sealed With A Kiss dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf (Instrumental)

Brian Hyland's "Sealed With A Kiss" takes on new life, gaining credibility in a semi-surf format. This pretty melody is a natural for this kind of interpretation. Teisco Del Rey and Santo and Johnny both made excellent versions of this. As different as they are, this is again unique in a different direction. Excellent.

Mer Morte (version originale) dotdotdotdot
Euro Whammy Surf (Instrumental)

This "version originale" is really nice, much prettier and more sparkling than the version on track 5. Simpler, more direct and true to form, "Mer Morte (version originale)" is very pleasing.

Supersonic Twist (version originale) dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Monkeying with pickslides up and down the neck to simulate jets, "Supersonic Twist" eventually yields to a riff rocker essentially based on Little Richards' "Lucille." The frantic echoed break sets it apart.

Quananiche Twist dotdotdot
Euro Whammy Rock (Instrumental)

Echoed, chopped, a little jam-like, and slightly showoff, "Quananiche Twist" seems to aim for stage fun. Progression oriented.