Call It In by Sean MoralesRelease date: January 12, 2018
Label: Super Secret Records
At some point in the late Seventies/early Eighties, punk bands that dominated the music scene at the time started to diversify and pick up on a series of familiar, or less familiar, influences and bring them into their music. Look at just what the ‘cats’ like The Clash, Television or The Feelies brought in.
So lets wind the clock a bit further on, shall we say some four decades on and start searching for similar innovators. It is easy to name quite a few, but let’s stick to a name that has not been heard of before. The case in point is a Virginia/Texas guy that goes by the name Sean Morales and his album Call It In.
It is no wonder the guy has not been heard of before, Call It In is his debut album and the innovation mentioned is nothing strikingly new, but an interesting mixture of disparate elements that only on the surface would sound like not going (well) together. On the basic foundation of what you would call folky psychedelia (‘Been Apart’ and ‘Party 1’), Morales brings in the punkishness of Chris Spedding’s 1978 ‘Video Life’, sounding somewhat like a cross between Television and early Feelies (the opening track here), the idiosyncratic weirdness of Alex Chilton (title track), some tasty Americana/Krautrock mixture (“Bring Me Home’), anywhere between Amon Duul II and ‘gentler’ Faust phases combined with some idiosyncratic weirdness, this time from Skip Spence, and then some raunchy blues licks , delta style (‘Problems’), or the combination of the latter two (‘Whispertime’). And it all doesn’t sound strange or disparate at all.
All this is wrapped up in some good, solid musicianship from a number of Austin, Texas musicians, including his wife Erica Barton on drums and an all-encompassing recording by Stuart Sikes, who had the same duties for the likes of The White Stripes, Cat Power, and Loretta Lynn. And it shows.
It also seems that the album has been tailored for the current vinyl boom, clocking a few minutes under half an hour. Still, that does not detract from it being an intriguing debut that makes you wonder where Morales will go next.