In hindsight, the seven-track Hank
EP would seem to herald the conclusion of Lambchop
's "straight" country period -- assuming, of course, that songs with titles like "Poor Bastard" and "I Sucked My Boss' Dick" could ever be considered pure country in the first place. The impossibly lush production which buoys tracks like "I'm a Stranger Here" and the gorgeous "Blame It on the Brunettes" screams Billy Sherrill
, however, and the melancholia which permeates the disc is the stuff of which endless nights in smoky honky-tonks are made; ultimately, in their own singularly bizarre way, Lambchop
has made what might just fly in under the radar as a classic country record, provided no one listens too closely. Of course, with the subsequent Thriller
, they produced the most dissonant and difficult album of their career, kissing fame and fortune goodbye forever. Nashville's loss, not ours.