Burnettes Album Schmalbum

Not an ode to the wonderfully tacky Carol, but the name of the actual couple who form one-half of the Burnettes. As evident from the album title, they have more than a passing attraction to kitsch, employed here for the most part with restraint and ingenuity. Beats for "Let’s Get Outta Here” are provided by a flicking cigarette lighter, and "The Mom Song” is a loving tribute to Cora Burnette’s own hard-workin’ mama (who likes to smoke and cuss by the way, and would mow the lawn if she had a yard). Theirs is a very genuine garage-y aesthetic — but from the time before garage rock went and got a middle-class haircut. "I don’t mind if I go blind,” hollers front-woman Cora Burnette, in one dirty little ditty about unrequited love. She has that cigarette-edged, boozy sort of voice that complements the record’s looseness. One of the strongest tracks, "Rot” begins all sinister and sneering, with offbeat phrasing and guitar that sounds freakishly like distorted didgeridoo. This is a splendidly raw piece of work, cheaply recorded and embellished only with a near-ubiquitous shaker. The first 500 of these babies also come with stunning artwork; the booklet itself an actual photo album of the band, complete with sticky old-school pages. The Burnettes create a lot using very little, and while their enthusiasm for schmaltz is sometimes to their detriment (enough with the banter!) their truly bent sensibility is very enjoyable. It’s theatrical and unhinged, but in the best way, with more than a few fun-lovin’ stalker odes that Neko Case would love. (Go Rock)