Nells nightclub in New York Cityís Chelsea District(14th Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues) has become famous over the years for its Tuesday night Amateur Night. Receiving such R&B royalty as Stevie Wonder and Chaka Khan as guests, it is a haven for musicians of all walks of life and the only place where the most unknown singer can be heard by legends and industry up-and-ups. Ironically, Nellsí greatest talent is not found on the center stage ó itís found behind the scenes: Tex Axile, one of the Tuesday night hosts and a veteran musician(having a distinguished musical resume with, among others, Peroxide Romance, The Outpatients, and Transvision Vamp), has put forth his self-written, self-produced Diary of a Genius.
This Lovely World
Slugs and Snails
It's So Hard
"This Lovely World" sets the stage for the rest of the album ó nothing short of original, pleasing snippets of music, plain and simple ó and each song never fails to please. Axile shines brightest with "I Love," a nouveau bohemian poetry reading with catchy guitar licks and upbeat tempo. Also worthy of note is the piss-and-vinegar Brit-humor of "Itís So Hard," a Monty Python out-take of sarcasms and falsettos, and "Car In A Lake," the albumís most serious tune thatís guaranteed to haunt the most stalwart listener for hours after itís over.
The albumís most interesting track is "Slugs and Snails," a funky jive in Soul Coughingís "Super Bon Bon" vein. Transvision Vamp fans might remember this song as "Puppy Dog Tails," a B-side on their "If Looks Could Kill" release, but take note: Axileís take on the song is far more original, and far more personally involved, than his former bandís take. Even if Axile isnít as photogenically candid as Wendy James once was, "Slugs", in the right hands, will ultimately be Axileís star vehicle.
Rather than cater to the fads of the ever-fickle music industry, or dumb down his music to the lowest common denominator and face death by heavy rotation, Axile sticks to the formula that made Nellsí Amateur Night gain the respect and credibility it has justly earned on the club circuit: simple music, catchy lyrics, and a smart-as-a-whip New York mentality. DIY/independent music has become the new high road for the serious musician, and Tex Axile ó for better or worse ó has traveled it. And that has made all the difference.
You can order the album exclusively through his website at http://www.texaxile.com.
Bernadette is an aspiring indie reviewer. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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