Sammy Poole's Praise the Lord! (19??)

In recent months, I have heard some criticism about my record reviews. Some have complained that I’m reviewing “good records” that aren’t really dollar bin material, even though that’s where you’re likely to find them. Okay, I hear you haters. And this is what you get.

If you have any doubts about the power of religion, remember that the Church (you know, those fucks) habitually castrated boys so that their larynx and vocal cords would not undergo the physiological changes associated with puberty and they could sing dopey Jesus songs well into their sexless 50s. This continued through most of the 19th Century, which is a shame, because if it had lasted into the mid-20th someone could have cut Sammy Poole’s balls off, stuffed them in his stupid mouth, and prevented this record from being released.

If you’ve ever wondered what Elvis would sound like if there were no Black people, this is pretty close. Orchestrated with strings, languid bass, and that Oh Oh Church Piano tinkly winkly, these songs drip with hand-ringing praise that any God would find insulting. When Sammy sings “I Should Have Been Crucified,” the Great Mystery is why he wasn’t. There’s a song about a lighthouse, and guess what? God is the lighthouse. And there’s a song about a river. God is the river. Too bad God isn’t a guillotine.    

Released on Sacred Profile Records during some accursed year between 1957 and 1973, this record has never sold on Discogs, and now I am the only person who has bothered to add it to their collection. Is this what you want, haters? This is the kind of shit you want to read about, huh?  

Phil Shaw