Sunday, 18 October 2015

Oliver: The Gibson Brothers - Broke Down Engine (29 December 1991)

Isn't it typical?  After a wave of angry, urgent female fronted selections, we find the men mucking about with their cars like their emotionally stunted counterparts in Alan Ayckbourn plays.

There are at least three artists called The Gibson Brothers on Discogs.  Peel probably steered clear of the late 70s French disco act who had 2 top 10 hits;  the 21st Century bluegrass act might have made his latter playlists but on 29/12/91 he was playing the lo-fi rock-blues outfit from Columbus, Ohio whose members would briefly include Jon Spencer.

Broke Down Engine was an update of Blind Willie McTell's 1931 composition, Broke Down Engine Blues.  It's smothered in that Duane Eddyesque twangy guitar that Peel was so fond of, and since hearing it again earlier this week, I've found myself singing "Lordy lord. Lordy lordy lord" in my unguarded moments.

Broke Down Engine was the flip-side to The Gibson Brothers' cover of Rex Garvin's gospel stomper, Emulsified.  The only shareable version I could find features both songs.  Broke Down Engine starts at about 5:20.  Emulsified proved incredibly durable and was covered by a number of groups including Yo La Tengo, and in the next selection, Peel will have an interesting tale to tell you about them and a very special guest...

Blind Wille McTell's original recording.  Unfortunately it seems he didn't live long enough to have a crack at Emulsified.

Videos courtesy of Ecilliterate (Gibsons) and RagtimeDorianHenry (McTell).

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