Published Oct 14, 2008Many words have been written about former punks gone to field, now saggily fronting country or blues bands. An easier way to put it is that we all eventually get old and fat and tired, but still persist. Robin Hunters story arc is different, though.
This new CD of his, You Just Gotta Get Used of It (released at a cozy cabaret show in an older oil booms library theatre), has a lot of the same vibrations he used back as lead singer of the Imagineers, flowing in a wave of music that included the smalls and SNFU. Then, as now, Hunters deep respect for older blues slows things down as part of the experiment, especially seen live.
The faces Hunter made as he sang a slide-blues song about an invisible suit chasing him around worked on so many levels it was sick. And his angsty "A Way Out of the Irons just gives a listener juice. Bookended by John Woroschuks sublime mandolin and the imposing standup bass of Thom Golub, they really are three of the best-sharpened musicians in the city. Throw in Hunters screwball improv stand-up banter and the openers, and it was a hell of a ticket.
He asked a number of friends to join him for the "evening with the bear-ish roots traditionalist Andy Donnelly, the smoky and sultry Sheri-Lee Wisor, and Old Reliables constantly-evolving Mark Davis, who Ive never heard sing so dangerously tender.
Anachronistic down to the paintings behind the players, it all felt like a future museums hologram of some idealized history. What it really was, though, is proof that sometimes we can outdo even our own legends.