Exposé Online banner

The Slambovian Circus of Dreams — A Box of Everything
(Bandcamp Red River RRECD134, 2014, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2016-07-11

A Box of Everything Cover art

From out of Sleepy Hollow, New York comes the strangely named and genre defying band The Slambovian Circus of Dreams aka Gandalf Murphy and The Slambovian Circus of Dreams aka The Grand Slambovians. Formed in 1998, they play a form of folk rock that some people have described as Hillbilly Pink Floyd or Punk Classical Hillbilly Floyd. They regularly play the major folk music venues in the Northeast and Canada, often to sold out crowds. The high point each year is the Grand Slambovian Hillbilly Pirate Ball, an annual costumed event in October before Halloween. The band's current lineup is Joziah Longo (lead vocals, guitar, harmonica), Sharkey McEwen (lead guitar, backing vocals, mandolin), Tink Lloyd (accordion, cello, flute, piccolo, theremin, backing vocals), and Eric Puente (drums, percussion). A Box of Everything, released in 2014, is their latest album. To give you an idea of the music, it may be best to give a run down of the 14 songs. The 70s inspired West Coast country rock “Rocket” opens the album, reminding me of The Byrds with a bit of Hawkwind’s “Time We Left This World Today.” Track two is the title track, which starts out like an acoustic singer songwriter tune and builds to electric hard rock/progressive tune with some great vocal harmonies. “Tink (I Know It’s You)” follows with harmonica, accordion, and acoustic guitar lending an element of Neil Young’s “Heart of Gold,” which is then augmented by a soaring electric guitar solo. Track 4 changes things up with “The Trans-Slambovian Bipolar Express,” a blues rock/country rock/David Bowie blend that really rocks! With track five, “Sunday in the Rain,” I began to notice the similarity of Joziah’s vocals to Bob Dylan and possibly Leonard Cohen. This excellent gothic western song also brought to my mind Bob Dylan’s Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid soundtrack. Next is “Very Happy Now,” an energetic and melodic song that makes you feel great. Track seven is the Dylanesque “Lost Highway,” waiting only for my boot heels to be wandering. At this point the band contributes the melodic, music hall, steam punk, circus, sing along “A Very Unusual Head” that reminds me of the Dresden Doll’s “Coin-Operated Boy.” This song is followed by the sinister gothic western song “Good Thief” that would have been at home in any Clint Eastwood spaghetti western. Track ten is an upbeat alternative rock song with the odd title “Pushin’ Up Daisies.” Track eleven “Living with God” takes us back to West Coast rock with a bit of Bruce Springsteen thrown in to create a secular praise song. Up to this point the songs have been in the 3 to 5 minute range. Track twelve “Talkin’ to the Buddha” is nearly 10 minutes of repetitive acoustic guitar riff, accordion, more Dylan vocals, electric guitar solos, and a progressive psychedelic mash-up. Track thirteen “Light a Way” is a great progressive folk song. And the album closes with “Alligators,” eight minutes of slow dark rock with the band tossing in the “Hey Jude” chorus in a minor key. What else can I say but that I am glad to have experienced the Slambovian’s musical world? By all means check them out for yourself. You can download a free sampler of their music from their web site.


Filed under: Archives, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): The Slambovian Circus of Dreams

More info
http://slambovia.com

Latest news

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more

2018-02-26
Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Five Fifteen - Six Dimensions of the Electric Camembert – For their fourth album (the first I’ve heard), Finland’s Five Fifteen continue their tradition of long psychedelic titles. Gong fans don’t be fooled, the mention of the French cheese...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues