“Next up are The Paraffins, aka Billy Samson, who describes new release Snout to the Grindstone as “an angry concept album, with some very poppy bits amidst the rusty debris”. As the title of this little section of this post implies Billy is a mate, which explains why he tried to sell me on the album by admitting “ok, it’s not the Hold Steady but I suppose you could say there’s some Tom Waitsy-ness with the junkyard percussion and whatnot…”
Okay, not really. But the fact that he tried to shoehorn it into my sometimes limited musical purview at all is a testament to how great my friends are. Snout to the Grindstone is a bit of a take-no-prisoners kinda album, and I suppose in that way is maybe reminiscent of somebody like Waits at his scrappy best… if we were talking some rusty steampunk half-robot version of Waits who was really, really pissed off, duetting with a serial sexpest.
You know one of the things I love the most about this album? It’s the cover art, by Lanarkshire cartoonist Gillian Hatcher. Depicting a cartoon face, teeth clenched and gripping his head in agony, it seems to perfectly sum up the complex, infuriating experience of listening to this album. And that’s meant as a compliment.” Lisa Marie Ferla, Last Year’s Girl