Review Allen Shadow
King Kong Serenade
Reprinted from:   Blue City Records
NY Rock By Bill Ribas

Shadow, a poet, had gone to Nashville years back when the songwriting mill was an interesting alternative to the then current state of music. Now, on a disc that took four years to make, he paints a vivid and nostalgic portrait of NY as seen from the street level. His poetic descriptions are a joy to read, as on "Crossroads of America," which begins, "Minnie Mouse gets grab-assed, by a white-whiskered alchy, in the leftover '50s light of the arcades of 42nd Street, jazz Cadillacs scream in octaves, generations wait at the cosmic light."

His delivery is not unlike Lou Reed's, predominantly spoken rather than sung, the voice gravelly, but not despondent. He also has some talent backing him, like guitarist John Jackson (Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams), and drummer Paul Griffith (John Prine), among others, so the musicianship is there as well. The disc smokes and burns like steam coming out of a manhole cover, gritty and authentic, and fans of New York and artists like Reed, Jim Carroll, etc. will find this a must-have addition to their music collection.


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