Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Wailers - The Fabulous Wailers At the Castledotdotdot
artworkThis repro of the long out of print live disc from Seattle legends the Wailers is a dandy add for your next frat party. You can almost smell the beer and see the togas. It sports a lot of instros and a few vocals from Kent Morrill, Rockin' Robin Roberts (RIP), and Gail Harris. Their seminal organ-sax-guitar Northwest sound launched a hundred wannabes, but this is the original. You'll find the raw primal grind of "Wailers House Party" and the soulin' suave of Freddie King's "San-Ho-Zay." The live treatment of their definitive martini ode "Tall Cool One" delivers shivers. The raw drive of "Dirty Robber" and "Louie Louie" define the genre, while their amazing nod to Ike and Tina Turner via "I Idolize You" with Gail Harris' screaming vocal puts the period stamp on the set.
Picks: Wailers House Party, San-Ho-Zay, Shivers, Sac O' Woe, Tall Cool One, Limbo Twist, Zig Zag, Soul-Long

Track by Track Review


Wailers House Party dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

Edgy crunch and grind from with the definitive Pacific Northwest band. It's sub-Dave Lewis melodically, but in that general direction structurally.

San-Ho-Zay dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

This is a spirited if not exciting version of Freddie King's "San-Ho-Zay." The guitar does the groovin' jam thing and the organ pumps while the Leslie whirls.

Shivers dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

"Shivers" is a minimal chord progression thing, dependent on the Leslie's groan for interest. It's a little similar to "Mashi," without the drive. It's quite a club jam.

Sac O' Woe dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

Sorta minor league Booker T and the MG's style thing, maybe a little bluesier in the guitar and less shiny in the organ. It reminds me a bit of the early Graham Bond Organization.

Tall Cool One dotdotdotdot
Pacific Northwest Bachelor Pad Club Instro (Instrumental)

The Wailers issued this and had a national hit with it in '59. It's a great honky tonkin' piano and sax squankin' R&B track. Wonderful!

Limbo Twist dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

"Limbo Twist" seems to me to be a typical Wailers riff rocker. It's spirited, but just not very melodic.

Zig Zag dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

A cha cha for your frat party. A progression without a melody. Chunky, but it just doesn't really go anywhere. Even when Rich Dangel comes in for the guitar kill, it's just a blues jam.

Soul-Long dotdotdot
Northwest Rock (Instrumental)

"So long darlin', I hate to see you go..." but with no vocals. A bluesy jam, sluggish and soulful.