The members of Charley Horse were not born in the traditional sense; rather they oozed collectively through the slimy muck of some backwater bayou with eyes gleaming strangely and instruments in hand. This is theme music to every horror movie involving inbred homicidal maniacs and chainsaws, a sinister and surreal tapestry of voodoo and snake oil, the soundtrack to every celebration of debauchery and sin.
Together, these five damaged souls have conjured up some of the spookiest and most compelling country/punk/rockabilly ever to be heard on this side of the Mason—Dixie line. This is music that will stay with you long after the amps have been switched off and everyone has gone home. In a world of phonies, Charley Horse is the real deal.
Purportedly from Los Angeles, California, but obviously from a darker, shadier locale, Charley Horse first surfaced in 2004 with the decidedly disturbing yet highly entertaining and raucous Unholy Roller. This is a vicious, rockin’ album, and standout songs such as “Bad Ass Dad” are enough to make the listener shudder with fear that any member of the band could actually be a father.
Punctuated frequently by blood-curdling screams and repeated exhortations to “pick it up,” “Backdown” starts gently with an ominous piano before piling head-on into a hedonistic train wreck of guitars and drums. On a scale of one to ten, Unholy Roller rates an eleven when it comes to demented and riotous caterwauling. Get this album, if you dare.
While not incredibly prolific, Charley Horse was back in 2011 with the swinging and upbeat Professional Sinners. Like their previous release, the album is a stompin’, haunted, and edgy addition to a slim but outstanding discography.
If you happen to be travelling through Tombstone and notice that Charley Horse are playing the Double Down Saloon, make sure to drop in for a powerful jolt of bone-shaking rock n’ roll.
Chris Walter is an unrepentant degenerate who no longer fuels his writing with prodigious amounts of liquor and drugs. Check out his many obnoxious and offensive books at www.punkbooks.com