Ribbon Of Fear (KLP209)
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Hornet Leg has had many manifestations as both a bedroom and live project for Chris Sutton (of C.O.C.O. and Dub Narcotic Sound System). In the past, Hornet Leg has been a solo acoustic guitar project, an electro-dance undertaking, a crushing two-person art noise assault, a melancholy pop outfit and a personal four-track recording enterprise. Those many incarnations have been presented at live shows for six years. Now with Ribbon of Fear [KLP209], the long-coming full-length debut, Hornet Leg is solidified as a three-man punk-blues powerhouse.
Similar to the vinyl EP, The Blood Trilogy [IPU116], released by K last year, Sutton has draped this Hornet Leg session in a delightfully raw sound. Where The Blood Trilogy was a dark-tinged rock-n-roll memento, Ribbon of Fear is heightened with a polyrhythmic jamboree of tambourine, piano keys, ghoulish laughter and female voice accompaniment. Punky twang meets doo-wop. The songs chronicle a love for the redemptive qualities of rock and roll, and they hit all the keynotes– including the ghostly stomp of "Night of the Phantom," the furious energy of "Snake Oil," the contemplative power pop of "Wait" and the somber cries for redemption of "Ruined My Life." Sutton's crowning glory is his inspiration that is drawn from just about anything that makes a sound. For this recording Hornet Leg assembled the newest line-up of Sutton on guitar, Robert Comitz on drums and Bob Desaulniers on bass. This trio's live performances expose the entire musical spectrum that Hornet Leg has been for Sutton: acapella, gospel, pop, and blues. Ribbon of Fear is a successful attempt to record six years of a shifting musical adventure into a cohesive, continuing document, overlapping with grace and vitality. A diary turned into a rock and roll mixtape.