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Dick Stusso | SP - Clear Vinyl

Hardly Art

Dick Stusso | SP - Clear Vinyl




Limited edition clear vinyl

Dick Stusso’s third album is a document of slow mental unravelling with a world in perpetual decay as its backdrop. With S.P., California-based singer and songwriter Nic Russo has created his most out-there and toothsome record to date, plunging his listeners into a strange and thrilling new world at every opportunity. 

S.P. is the first Dick Stusso record in four years, following his stellar Hardly Art debut In Heaven from 2018—but this latest missive is more of an indirect sequel to the buzz-building 2015 release Nashville Dreams / Sings the Blues, diving deeper into the fictional character Dick Stusso’s crumbling psyche and dystopian surroundings.

If our introduction to Dick was someone trying to pursue their dreams and turning into a failure as a result, S.P. reflects the moment where, in Russo’s words, “The character is becoming unlikable. He’s succumbing to what is taking place around him. ”Nearly half of its 18 songs—spanning countrified rock duets, Guided by Voices-recalling anthems, and outro noise-burst sound experiments—were completed before the pandemic, when Russo decided to take a beat and allow the music to sprout new, weird buds in his rehearsal space.

With mixer Andrew Oswald accentuating the record’s unique feel, S.P. bridges the gap between the ultra lo-fi confines of his 2015 debut Nashville Dreams / Sings the Blues and the lush echoes of In Heaven, with a few helping hands to fully flesh out Russo’s vision. Grace Cooper (The Sandwitches, Grace Sings Sludge) contributes vocals to “Dinner for Two” and “Self Reflection (Deep),” while his father Marc Russo—a Grammy-winning saxophonist who’s currently touring with the Doobie Brothers—lays down expert horn arrangements on “Garbagedump #1.” The myriad of twists and turns on S.P. further establish Russo as a fascinating craftsman who’s never bound to do the same thing twice.

"I'm a big fan of Chris Isaak's early work, and like most people of a certain age, I was introduced to his music via the video for Wicked Game (the one with supermodel Helena Christensen). But what I preferred was how the song worked in David Lynch's Wild At Heart (which is an adaption of the Sailor and Lula books written by one of my all-time favourite writers Barry Gifford).
Anyway. Wicked Game works so well in Wild At Heart because the movie is a gonzoid rodeo road show of f*cked up Lynchian nightmare. The song on the other hand, is a classic Orbison inspired slice of sultry melody, and it is the juxtaposition of the two that amplifies the power of each component beyond greatnesss.
This new Dick Stusso record is what would have happened if Isaak had prowled the desert with Drop Shadow and Reggie, or was sat at the motel poolside table with Bobby Peru; unhinged gonzo rock n roll, full o' flavour, a tropical shirt whipping in the Pacific breeze, a snakeskin jacket in a knife fight." - Capt Willard, LFD April '23

RIYL Tom Waits, BC Camplight's Deportation Blues, Chris Isaak, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Captain Beefheart, Peter Bibby, Bob Log III, Royal Trux, Danzig etc 


01. Rocking Machine

02. Part-time Apocalypse

03. The Check In

04. Convenient Life

05. Garbagedump #1

06. A Fairly Normal Guy

07. Dinner For Two

08. The Masterwork

09.Self Reflection (Deep)

10. Big Money

11. Haunted Hotel

12. Checking Back

13. How Do You Spell Success?

14. Doubt

15. Failure

16. Hell

17. Twilight At The Shareholders' Meeting

18. Tears Of Love

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