Sounds of the Vaudvillian Freakshow
In a dark Victorian theatre which has the distinctive smells of old beer and burlesque makeup, just behind the red velvet curtains and somewhere between the spectacled ghost of Buddy Holly and Charlie Chaplin's laundry hamper, The Damn Jammage are releasing their new E.P, "Well Hanged".
"Well Hanged" brings together the recently formed London 6 piece to play a potent combination of Blues/Jazz/Country/Rockabilly/Folk and just about anything else you can think of to create a vibrant Vaudevillian sound. Though The Damn Jammage seem to be gravitating toward the Nick Cave style of energetic and playfull vaudeville rather than the lamenting and often industrial sound that artists like Tom Waits prefer, the band aren't afraid to experiment, as the 4 track E.P suggests.
Danny Rapscallion (That is the singer's name, and yes, it does make him sound like one of Fagin's minions from Oliver Twist... though I think that's intentional... maybe) growls, snarls and howls down his microphone with all the power of a runaway steam-powered locomotive of the American frontier and at times sounds influenced by gravel-gargling vocalists like Mark Lanegan. Together with vocalist and pianist Jasmine Daniels, the two singers complement each other very well as can be seen in songs like 'Lost Lonely Love', an infectious sing-along style song that evokes images of the roaring twenties and suited gentlemen (with a lady on one arm and a top hat under the other) attempting to raise a round champagne glass and singing in a new year.
Musician Lottie Bowater seems to get a lot of mileage out of the accordion on the E.P, and makes me wonder that if the accordion had as many talented players, would it have fallen into seeming obscurity? While Lewis Jones keeps a tight and bouncing rhythm on his percussive instruments, the rest of the band come together to harp out a style of music there definitely should be more of. Stand out songs off of the E.P include 'No Rest For The Crooked' and 'Stockpiling Poison'.