Thursday, June 18, 2020

Certain Songs #1845: The Reivers – “She Digs Ornette” | Medialoper

Album: Translate Slowly
Year: 1985

. . .

In 1985, when Translate Slowly came out, The Reivers had a bit of the “next big thing” buzz around them. Of course, they were called Zeitgeist at that point, a name they lost in a lawsuit, so a couple of years after this album came out, they changed their name to The Reviers and retconned this record. Meanwhile, as you all know, the other Zeitgeist, had several massive records after they got the name.

In any event, while I didn’t think that Translate Slowly quite lived up to the pre-release hype — often based around the vocal harmonies of John Croslin and Kim Longacre — I fell deeply in love with an instrumental on the first side, with ever-intriguing title of “She Digs Ornette.”

We haven’t done a lot of instrumentals here at Certain Songs, mostly because I prefer songs with words, I guess? That way, you kinda know what the song is about. Which, in the case, of “She Digs Ornette,” is clearly about a chick who digs the music of jazz saxophonist Ornette Coleman. So maybe it doesn’t need words.

In any event, “She Digs Ornette” doesn’t really sound anything like Ornette Coleman, centering around the intertwining guitars of Croslin and Longacre and the hyper-aggressive drumming of Garrett Williams, who both drives the song forward and adds a lot of color to the first half, which is basically a couple of arpeggiated chords going back and forth.

It’s Croslin who adds the color to the second half, going off an a great counterpoint guitar solo that virtually comes out of nowhere and drives “She Digs Ornette” to another level. And that’s really all there is to it, probably a throwaway, no, definitely a throwaway, but a great throwaway.

“She Digs Ornette”

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