Rock Bottom Rhapsody

Pokey LaFarge - Rock Bottom Rhapsody
Critic Score
Based on 4 reviews
User Score
Based on 62 ratings
2020 Ratings: #209
Liked by 3 people
April 10, 2020 / Release Date
LP / Format
Old-Time / Genres
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This is my first experience with a Pokey LaFarge record and I have to say that what this guy is doing is absolutely exceptional.

This record has so much charisma and personality, putting a new spin on the doo wop sounds from early 60s artists si chi as, Sam Cooke and The Temptations. Some of the songs on the album even take on a more jazzy and soulful approach, affectively rendering LaFarge as a male near carnation of the late great Amy Winehouse. The effortless, smooth, swagger deliveries all ... read more
It's cabaret night at the Soho Theatre and there are five different acts to entertain you.

Pokey LaFarge is definitely in your top three favourites of the night...but he's not your number one.

That this retro performer sidesteps the dreaded pit marked 'novelty act' is what's most important here - he earns my applause, if not quite my single red rose.
Pokey LaFarge is set to release his ninth studio album on Friday, ‘Rock Bottom Rhapsody,’ via New West Records and it is anticipated to continue the ramp up of his already impressive career.

His 2010 album ‘Riverboat Soul’ claimed the Best Americana Album as did his follow-up, ‘Middele of Everywhere.’ His ‘Something in the Water’ offerings was named one of the Best Folk Albums of 2015 and after ‘Manic Revelations’ in 2017 he was named ... read more
I love everything about the aesthetic on this record. The blown out percussion, the gummy basslines, and the spaced out vocals all give it the obvious Oldies feel that LaFarge was going for. I hope this doesn’t pigeonhole him as a novelty act because some of the songwriting really didn’t fit the mold of oldies and deserves to be viewed in its own light, but that more than likely won’t happen. A great sub-40 minute listen.
I know this isn't necessarily an original sound Pokey is demonstrating, but I kind of feel like it's special anyway. Really special. Like I'm-gonna-listen-to-it on-repeat-until-someone-makes-me-stop-special.
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anztec, Novell_sx, MarkyC, bgod
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Track List

  1. Rock Bottom Rhapsody
  2. End of My Rope
  3. Fuck Me Up
  4. Bluebird
  5. Rock Bottom Reprise
  6. Lucky Sometimes
  7. Carry On
  8. Just the Same
  9. Fallen Angel
  10. Storm - A - Comin’
  11. Ain’t Comin’ Home
  12. Lost in the Crowd
  13. Rock Bottom Finale

Year End Lists

#10/Fresh Air: Ken Tucker
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Added on: January 25, 2020