L.S.U. - Dogfish Jones (Re-issue)

Gosh, talk about a blast from the past!  LSU used to be one of my favorite bands back in the day.  Anything Michael Knott put his hands to, I was all over.  My first exposure to the band were the albums Wakin' Up the Dead and This is the Healing.  As time went on, I tracked down other albums from LSU and Michael Knott like Poplife, The Grape Prophet, Screaming Brittle Siren, Cash in Chaos, Fluid, and others.  Each one very different and special in it's own way. 

On Dogfish Jones, LSU creates a very unusual concept album that tells the story of Jonah (sorta), but with numerous liberties.  In fact, the lyrics are not printed here, but are available on Michael Knott's website.  And even after reading through them, I find it hard to believe that most people could tell that this had anything to do with Jonah.  Anyways...musically, this is vintage LSU.  Their quirky, psychedelic brand of alternative rock is fabulous and captivating.  While this will bore most metalheads for sure, the stuff is pure genius.  From the rockin' numbers like the title track to the mesmerizing "Greensea  Island".  The music takes on a life of it's own and whether it makes you sway back and forth or culvuse in a headbanging fit, it fits perfectly.  They even include some Irish drinking songs sung by Knott's father.  To top things off, this album includes other greats like Chuck Cummings on drums and the late Gene Eugene on B-3 Organ.  And then there is the great Michael Knott.  His hugely interesting vocals take center stage and really make this band what it is.  He almost sounds like he's high on something as he takes each song to unique, yet equally high levels. 

If you like music that is difficult to fit in a nice, pretty box, then LSU is the perfect match.  This album is captivating and engaging and finds LSU in one of their finest moments.  This Retroactive Records re-release has been digitally remastered and also includes a short history write-up by Mark Allen Powell. 

This is some good stuff!!

Rating: 91/100

Review By: Matt Morrow

Label: Retroactive Records

Total Songs: 14

Total Time: 57:29

Tracklisting: 1. Dogfish Jones, 2. Storm at Sea, 3. Let Me Out, 4. Barnacle Bob, 5. Down, 6. Greensea Island, 7. Hated Souls, 8. Tell of the Well, 9. Mercy Maid, 10. Magical Rainbow Door, 11. Seashell Sally, 12. Edge, 13. Shanghai Overdrive, 14. The Boyos.

Best Songs: Tracks 1 & 6.

Band Lineup: Michael Knott - Vocals/Guitars, Chuck Cummings - Drums, Jeff Elbel - Bass, Andrew Carter - Guitar, Chris Brigandi - Guitar, Gene Eugene - B-3 Organ, Howard Knott - Vocals, Nate Catch - Strings.

Band Website: http://www.michaelknott.com