Lee Bob Watson: 'Living in the Past'

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Lee Bob Watson

California's Lee Bob Watson is a country gentleman. He's the kind of guy that lives on slide guitar, scoffs at dance rock, and tries his damndest to make Johnny Cash proud. But on his latest album, Aficionado, Watson pairs his cowboy hat with Chuck Taylor's and adds an indie-rock flavor to his country roots.

Former Cake drummer Todd Roper and current Cake bassist Gabe Nelson back up Watson on the album, which was mostly recorded live with little or no overdubs.

On "Landfill," Watson plays with guitar feedback and criticizes the American Dream much like M. Ward or Conor Oberst's overt social commentary. "Lord I Know" opens with a drum fill straight from the Elvis Costello song "Watching the Detectives." And in his boldest attempt at hipster cred, the faux-disco drums on "Living in the Past" mix with an Elvis Presley-styled slapback vocal and palm muted guitar.

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