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Southern Culture on the Skids

Zombified – 2011 (Kudzu)

Reviewed by John Walker

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CDs by Southern Culture on the Skids

Southern Culture On The Skids is a countrified version of ZZ Top meets Junior Brown. This North Carolina based band reached cult status since it began making its own brand of Americana music in 1983. Their unique sound is a lethal combination of early rock and roll, surf, country western and mountain music. This fun musical hybrid is perfect for their latest release "Zombified". The 13-song collection of songs is dedicated to the horror and exploitation movies across the U.S. in the '60s and '70s. This release is an update of an Australian release in 1998, which only included 8 songs, and was never officially released here.

Consisting of primarily three band members, it is hard to fathom all of this raw energy flowing from so few. Rick Miller is exceptional with lead vocals and guitar. Mary Huff adds her own broad appeal with vocals, keyboards and a mean bass. Dave Hartman drives the sound home on drums and percussion.

This record would make a very good soundtrack to any nostalgic tongue in cheek horror movie. One glance at the song titles alone, and you realize this should be fun, especially with the SCOTS behind the wheel. The mood is set immediately as the initial song - the title track kicks in with the eerie screeching guitar mastered by Miller, while Hartman adds the sound of your own heartbeat gaining speed on drums. Finally, Huff's bass drives the mood home just as Miller releases the vocals leading us on a path toward horror and darkness.

The horror hayride continues nonstop with more originals such as Undertaker, Bloodsucker, Devils Stomping Ground, The Creeper, and the fun Eyeball You Later. The SCOTS also do a wicked instrumental on the John Fogerty classic Sinister Purpose.

This is a must for any SCOTS fan or fan of the old B horror movies on the big screen.