Music Reviews

Mark Olson & the Creek Dippers

Pacific Coast Rambler

Koch

After a decade of flirting with minor success, Mark Olson left The Jayhawks in 1995, to return to the roots of American music. He is the true indie musician, disinterested in trends and popular appeal. Aided by his wife, the singer Victoria Williams (credited here as “Mabel Allbright”), and various friends, he laid down The Original Harmony Ridge Creek Dippers in his living room in 1997. The self-released follow-up was Pacific Coast Rambler in 1999.

Due to modest acclaim, Koch Records re-released Pacific Coast Rambler in 2001. And it’s a peculiar hybrid. The reverse reads The Original Harmony Ridge Creek Dippers in sloppy handwriting; the front, a makeshift crayon drawing, is titled Pacific Coast Rambler. The rest of the design is exceedingly hard to read and unambitious.

This is not alt-country in the style of Wilco. It’s strained, frail and patchy, with a homespun sincerity that is all the more endearing. There is a quaint, earthy element to each of these tracks (“Kai’s Bristlecone Waltz,” “Elijah”) that skirts past the usual affectations of folk singers. Most absent is the self-consciousness that one would expect to find on a release such as this. While the music will not win over every listener, the sincerity certainly has its appeal.

The Koch re-release has two bonus tracks: “Louisiana Black Dog Moses” and “Sunny Western Winter.” Though both are lacking in recording quality, their inclusion is welcome on this musically spare album. Pacific Coast Rambler doesn’t merit praise of the highest order, but it is for the most part a genuine, back-to-basics approach that has been largely forgotten in pre-packaged studio music. For that it should be respected, if nothing else.

Koch Entertainment: http://www.kochentertainment.com • Mark Olson & the Creek Dippers: http://www.thegrid.net/creekdipper


Recently on Ink 19...

Little Feat

Little Feat

Event Reviews

With Miko Marks opening a wonderful evening in Iowa City, Little Feat plunder their back catalog as Jeremy Glazier stands beneath the freak flag.

Meditations on Crime

Meditations on Crime

Print Reviews

Politics is Crime. Crime is Politics. Discuss… Carl F. Gauze reviews Meditations on Crime, the book half of Harper Simon’s super-collaborative art and music project.

Porn and Ice Cream

Porn and Ice Cream

Screen Reviews

Three aimless misfits find themselves a purpose when they unwittingly start a band. It’s not your typical rock story, as Ian Koss explains.

Fire and Iceland

Fire and Iceland

Interviews

New York filmmaker April Anderson talks with Bob Pomeroy about volcanoes, horses, and making documentaries in Iceland.

Best of Film 2022

Best of Film 2022

Screen Reviews

With a year of festival and microcinema screenings behind them, Lily and Generoso select and review their ten favorite films, six supplemental features, and one exceptional repertory release of 2022.

Laura Citarella

Laura Citarella

Interviews

Director Laura Citarella, of the famed filmmaking collective El Pampero Cine, has created with her newest feature Trenque Lauquen a provocative transformation of her protagonist Laura (Laura Parades), whom Citarella first introduced in her 2011 film Ostende. Lily and Generoso enjoyed an in-depth conversation with Citarella about Trenque Lauquen when it screened at AFI Fest 2022.

New Music Now 009: Sleepyhead

New Music Now 009: Sleepyhead

Features

Join us for a new edition of New Music Now, with our special musical guest, Sleepyhead. All three members of the band are school teachers, so you didn’t hear it from us, but there might be a pop quiz about their album New Alchemy after the show.

%d bloggers like this: