The first thing you notice is the garish artwork for the booklet
cover. 'Love, Ambush, Betrayal' it extols, with a picture of a cowboy (rather
oriental looking and with a tear in the eye that might suggest that there
could be flowing feminine curls under that hat) and perhaps the same person,
a pretty young girl, holding a parasol and luggage, stepping from a distinctly
oriental summerhouse. Other pictures suggest a cowboy shoot-out others a
more modern war-time setting.
I suggest all this because the music embraces a bewildering plethora
of styles. The opening track 'Mercy', belies its title for it is a cheerful
upbeat number that has a tenor voice over what sounds like an oriental Palm
Court Orchestra. 'The Moon Lament' has a husky soprano voice with a shaky
delivery, sliding up and down to her notes, the tune a rather sentimental
country and western seasoned with oriental figures. 'When the Rain Bid the
Sky Farewell' has the lady continuing her musings over a mix of waltz and
tango rhythms the music veering in a more westerly direction. The sentimental
'Destiny' from the male vocalist lunges back towards traditional oriental.
'Beautiful Beach' suddenly sidetracks towards Hawaii with the guitarists sliding
all over the place as well as the fermale vocalist. In 'Splendid Night Sky'
the lady's huskiness rivals that of Marlene Dietrich.
Six out of the thirteen tracks are purely instrumental and most
are repeats of earlier material. For example, Mercy, this time round has whistling
replacing the vocal. Elsewhere, listen out for the simulated gun shots, they
give a whole new dimension to the western genre!
File under – Curiosities (very curious!) One of those CDs that
is so bad that its good; fun in small doses.