Friday, December 29, 2023

Dan Sartain – The Lost Record LP – Yellow & Black Swirl Vinyl (/1000)


Bent Rail / Seasick (2023)

Of all of the Black Friday Record Store Day releases that were announced for this year, seeing a Dan Sartain record as one was probably the most surprising.  I was able to get my hands on one through the kindness of my lovely wife, as I was not able to get out to the store myself for a myriad of annoying reasons.

This album was recorded before Dan Sartain recorded his Swami debut, Vs. The Serpientes.  It was done with the folks in Plate Six, who he had toured and collaborated with from time to time.  The result is a record that sounds like a natural step in between his Crimson Guard record and what would eventually come out on Swami.

The songs are all great, but many ar ones that you may have heard before.  "Who's Sorry Now" and "This is How they Beat You Down" were both previously released on a Bent Rail 7" back in 2005.  Different recordings of "Lonely Hearts," "Tryin' To Say" and "Autopilot" appeared on Vs. The Serpientes.  That leaves us with four new songs, one of which is about 20 seconds of noisy wailing.  The three new songs are all stellar and it's kind of crazy to me that they remained unreleased until now.  It's the traditional dark, vaguely leaning towards rockabilly sound that Dan was perfecting in that time period.

Even the songs that were on Vs. The Serpientes have a completely different light cast on them in these recordings.  They feel more bass heavy with a lower end that makes them sound a bit more ominous and engaging.  The coolest part is that this really sounds like a cohesive record, despite knowing a lot of the songs from elsewhere.  There's a definite feeling and vibe that they have and they work together making to total album stronger.

I really miss Dan Sartain and I do get depressed when I listen to some of his music at times.  But there's no denying how great his songs are and how much I still enjoy listening to them.  I'm grateful for this lost record, and I hope that one day someone will be able to release Western Hills and Vs. Sun Studio on vinyl as well.

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