Guy Forsyth

Unrepentant Schizophrenic Americana (Small and Nimble)

Texas Platters

Guy Forsyth

Unrepentant Schizophrenic Americana (Small and Nimble)

Two hundred twenty-two minutes. That's how much Guy Forsyth & Co. cram onto the two live platters of the well-named Unrepentant Schizophrenic Americana. Pick a weapon – harmonica, composer's pen, saw, bandleader baton, voice, guitar – and Forsyth will display his formidable skills, particularly onstage, where the Austin showman shines like a newly minted Double Eagle. Heads, the first disc, captures Forsyth and band at Antone's last summer, while Tails hodgepodges radio appearances, house parties, festivals, Saxon Pub shows, etc. Great cuts abound, including Tom Waits vaudeville ("Adam's Rib"), other-side-of-the-tracks country ("Red Letter Bible"), Celtic-esque balladry ("Children of Jack"), Latin-infused jam ("Tattletale"), and other overlapping sonic circles. Contributions by Colin Brooks, Wammo, Ephraim Owens, and Mark Addison shine. The production is equally bright, but like a novel with too many evaporating side plots, this live magnum opus should have employed Occam's razor to shave "Auld Lang Syne," "Play to Lose," and "Run On." Even then, Unrepentant Schizophrenic Americana is the Forsyth fan's desert island collection.

***

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Guy Forsyth

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