Shawn David McMillen ‘On the Clock with JJ and Mitch’

shawn david mcmillen

The funniest thing happened when I dropped the needle for the first time on the latest from Shawn David McMillen, On the Clock with JJ & Mitch— the damn thing got me stoned. One minute I was puttering around the house, cleaning things up, organizing random shit, and the next I was on the couch, high as hell and deep in peaceful thought about how true it so often is that the simpler things in life are the finer things in life are. And the thing is, I hadn’t even been thinking about getting high. I don’t think I even had any weed. It’s like the record twisted up a nice fat joint, stuck it in my mouth, and lit the thing without me even noticing. Until, of course, I noticed. Which was right around the time the album’s idiosyncratic, often easy-going groove pulled me in and set me to rolling along at its rhythm.

The folks at Trailer Space (where you should head, if you can, to buy this record– and maybe stumble into a shot or a hit or some other such thing with Shawn and JJ and Mitch while you’re at it) call this Shawn’s pop record. And a contrast between it’s decidedly constructed, catchy melodies and the broke down, fucked up blues of Shawn’s last album, Dead Friends, makes it easy to see their point. But it also has some nice guitar freakout moments that make it seem like his electric free jazz record. Or maybe its just one of the best distillations of his myriad influences and distinct sensibility he’s yet laid to wax.

In any case, anyone who’s a fan of the unfortunately dubbed freak-folk scene, or anyone who’s ever enjoyed a Six Organs of Admittance record, or maybe one of Steve Gunn’s recent efforts, or anyone who’s prone to running out to pick up the latest reissue of some lost psych-folk/loner-folk/country-folk/whatever-the-fuck folk album, should run out and grab this one straight away. Then you’ll get to say you had it before it became a lost classic. And it’ll get you high. Now if that’s not a great fuckin’ record, I don’t know what is.

On the Clock with JJ & Mitch is out now via 12xu. Check it out here. Or go grab a copy over at Trailer Space.

Heavy Metal or Baptist Hymn?

heavy metal or baptist hymnal

If you’ve ever spent any time with a Baptist hymnal, then you know that its pages runneth over with hymns that feature as many epic, blood-soaked tales as the most battle-worn Manowar album or Slayer at their Satanic-est. So los grillos thought we’d toss out a segment from time to time that features lyrics from either a heavy metal song or a Baptist hymn and let you, the reader, take a guess at which it is. Winners get the satisfaction of knowing their heavy metal history from their Baptist hymnal. That and a nickel, and you’ll have five cents.

There is Power in the Blood

Would you be free from the burden of sin?
There’s power in the blood, power in the blood
Would you over evil a victory win?
There’s wonderful power in the blood

There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the blood of the Lamb
There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the precious blood of the Lamb
Would you be free from your passion and pride?
There’s power in the blood, power in the blood
Come for a cleansing to Calvary’s tide
There’s wonderful power in the blood

There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the blood of the Lamb
There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the precious blood of the Lamb
Would you be whiter, much whiter than snow?
There’s power in the blood, power in the blood
Sin-stains are lost in its life-giving flow
There’s wonderful power in the blood

There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the blood of the Lamb
There is power, power, wonder-working power
In the precious blood of the Lamb

What do you think? Heavy metal or Baptist hymn? And the answer is…

And here’s a bonus track…

Soldiers Under Command

We are the soldiers under God’s command
We hold His two-edged sword within our hands
We’re not ashamed to stand up for what’s right
We win without sin, it’s not by our might
And we’re fighting all the sin
And the good book, it says we’ll win

Soldiers, Soldiers, under command
Soldiers, Soldiers, fighting the Lords battle plan

Are you a soldier under God’s command
Help fight the good fight, join us while you can
The battle that’s waiting is fought so easily
Through Him, without sin there is victory
And we’re fighting all the sin
And the good book, it says we’ll win

Soldiers, Soldiers, under command
Soldiers, Soldiers, fighting the Lords battle plan

Soldiers, Soldiers, under command
Soldiers, Soldiers, fighting the Lords battle plan

Heavy metal? Or hymn? (Hint: This one’s a trick question– it’s both!)…