The Early Years
Los Pacaminos (Featuring Paul Young)
THE ROCKING MAGPIE 30TH MARCH 2016
Authentic and Lovingly Crafted Tex-Mex from the Heart of London Town.
I’ve been a fan of Paul Young (Wherever I Lay My Hat etc.) from his days in the Q Tips; one of the finest Soul/R&B Revues I’ve ever seen; and their version of SYLJFM is still in my Top 10 of all time; so it pains me to say a) I’ve never seen his latest incarnation – Los Pacaminos play live; and b) I actually had no idea they had released three albums and a couple of EP’s!
Thankfully with this sparkly new disc (there’s a second waiting for review soon, too) I’m finally putting b) right; but sadly; like cheap French wine; the band don’t travel very well, so I guess I won’t see them play live any time soon
So; to the music……
The opening track My, My, My starts with a glorious accordion break from Matty Irving; and it’s not too far away from the Pogues ‘Fiesta;’ and the song itself sets the tone for a frivolous but exceptionally well executed hour or so of ‘Border Music;’ taking in styles as diverse as Ry Cooder through to Buddy Holly, Doug Sahm and even Hollywood Elvis.
Second track Manana; slows things down with a delightful Rumba beat; as Paul Young does his finest ‘Aloha’ Elvis impression; or at least so it sounds to me….and I love it.
As I understand it, all of the songs on the original album are self-penned; but any or all could easily come from the back catalogue of the Sir Douglas Quintet, The Mavericks or even the lighter/fun side of Tom Russell. Early on Perdita is guaranteed to get even me, with my two left feet on the dance-floor; as will the glorious Raised on Margaritas and I would love to direct a video for the waltz-time ballad, Poor Boys.
The Ry Cooder influence oozes out of every note on the instrumental Terra D’Ensuenos and fans of the Mavericks would crawl over flaming coal to hear that band sing No Seas Tonto Mujer; which is sung in a very authentic sounding Spanish by the All English Band.
There’s not a bad song among the 15 tracks on offer; and me and Mrs. Magpie ended up having harsh words over which is the best song here; both songs come from the Rare EP’s; with me loving their reconstruction of You’d Better Move On; which sounds nothing at all like the Rolling Stones version that I grew up listening too; and is all the better for it; and Mrs. Magpie has plumped for Hey Baby Que Paso; which I have a copy by the legendary Texas Tornados; who were probably another huge influence on the fledgling Los Pacaminos.
I first played this album on one of the first sunny days of Spring; and now two weeks later I’ve decided it would be like a little ray of South x South Western sunshine on the wettest of British Summer days.