Mudslide Charley 

RamShackle Soul

Just in time for all this warm weather come locals Mudslide Charley with a new album. It's blues, but the kind you dance to down at a park during any Missoula festival. Fortunately, it's not just for background celebration; RamShackle Soul has its gritty tunes, too.

"Little Lu La Lay" sounds like the band took over a tavern down by the train tracks. You can just imagine the door wide open as the band plays, people sitting outside smoking cigarettes and taking nips from a bottle of homemade apple jack as hot blue skies turn to dusk. The air is full of sex and sweat. There might be a fistfight but it'll end in forgiveness over a last-call beer.

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"Liquid Velvet" emits raw sass as it chugs along like a train burning through the prairie. "Swish" slows to molasses with smooth interjections of harmonica from Charlie Hopkins. Marco Littig sings with gravelly playfulness, and backup singers, aka The Black Haired Angels, inject loads of soul. The song "Black Haired Angel," however, dallies too long in predictable riffs and a stagnant muddiness. And "Texas BBQ" reminds me of "The Monster Mash," which is weird. Altogether, though, it's an album with good flavor: wicked danger mixed with summery glee.

Mudslide Charley plays a CD release party Friday, July 15, at the Old Post Pub and Saturday, July 16, at the Bitter Root Brew Pub in Hamilton. Free.

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