Calexico : Ride, The

Let them tell you their story, but keep a blade in your sleeve.

The man in the black hat is after you for what you did to his sister. Cactii cast strange shadows in the dusk, as lizards scuff the sand and snakes rattle joylessly. Somewhere far away, a coyote howls...

That's somewhere very far away, mind, because in north London, the only things howling are next-door's kids and a distant car alarm. Yet Calexico's mariachi magic is a formidably persuasive scene-setter - what should be hollow like a Hollywood sound stage, all plastic rocks and painted sunsets, is dusted with elegant mystery and chill conviction. That's what being the rhythm section of the legendarily sun-baked Giant Sand does for you. That and a gift for the ghost-town twang, the desert mythology. Let them tell you their story, but keep a blade in your sleeve.

Stevie Chick

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