UNCLE KRACKER; "Double Wide" (Lava/Atlantic). ***
When Rob Zombie left White Zombie, his fame flame shot higher than anyone could have imagined. Sure, he took the Zombie name with him, but he was able to expand on White Zombie's horror-schlock sound.
When Peter Frampton left Humble Pie, he became one of the '70s most successful solo artists.Now, two other musicians have, at least temporarily, left the comforts of their cushy jobs as members of multiplatinum bands. And by the sound of their solo outings, they could be on to something good.
Space-monkey Wes Borland, the guitarist for Limp Bizkit, has escaped the Bizkit rap-metal zoo for a spell, and now he's focusing on some riotous meanderings that tap into early grindcore grooves and Captain Beefheart psychedelia.
"Duke Lion Fights the Terror!!" captures Borland, as Big Dumb Face, at his most spontaneous take a listen to the 19-minute album-capper "It's Right in Here," which is a crash course in attention-deficit disorder gone amok in the studio.
And his tongue is nestled firmly in his cheek when the catchy title track gallops out of the speakers or headphones and into the listener's head.The techno imprints of "Robot" and the outright rock of "Rebel" are yet further mechanical dimensions of this sometimes crude (note the explicit warning label) but always innovative musician.
Disc jockey Uncle Kracker gained a following with his rhythmic high-energy vinyl record scratches and needle drops during the raucous Kid Rock shows.
This time, Kracker, known to his close ones as Matt Shafer, is on his own. Although Rock was in the producer's seat, the album is actually a smooth departure from the hard-metal rap of KR.
In fact, "Double Wide" is a lot more bluesier and, well, mellower.
Sure, there are a few raps that come into play "What 'Chu Lookin' At?" and "Who's Your Uncle" but there's also the groovy single "Follow Me" and the anthemic "Heaven," which, by the way, includes a lighthearted jab at good ol' Salt Lake City.In short, "Double Wide" is a cruising album. Just pop it in your car stereo and head for the horizon.
E-MAIL: [email protected]