Oxbow The Narcotic Story

Oxbow The Narcotic Story
Six albums in, the most mesmerising aspect of Oxbow is still Eugene Robinson’s charismatic and heartfelt vocal performance. While the lo-fi, blues crusted, traditional genre defying music obviously plays a part in his storytelling, the soul of this album rests in his vocalisations. Robinson’s seemingly drug-induced theatrics range from tortured howls to delirious mumblings, from bitter sweet, off-key crooning to faint, pain ridden whispers, from incomprehensible grunting to deranged yelping, oft times sounding like a teenage, straight-jacketed Tom Waits throwing a temper tantrum in the local rehab facility’s padded cell. Disturbed in a very pensive way, the drama is honest in its experiments and as with any album of this nature, it has to be taken in as a whole to appreciate its depth. The Narcotic Story is a deviant and eclectic narrative with the ability to appeal to both Pitchforkers and Lambgoaters alike. (Hydra Head)