|An aural portrait that owes a debt to Southern bluesmen and Americana pioneers alike, Chris Cotton’s Yellow Dog Records debut sounds like a house party caught on tape – world-weary men effortlessly strumming their guitars and bass, while passing around a jug of whiskey for sustenance. The barrelhouse piano, is, of course, pushed up against one wall; Cotton’s gravelly voice reigns over the debauchery. The scene is timeless – harkening back to days when the distinction between blues and country was hopelessly blurred.
Former Blue Eyed Devils frontman Cotton traveled to Clarksdale, MS to record I Watched the Devil Die at producer Jimbo Mathus’ vintage-equipment studio, housed in the city’s historic WROX radio building. Employing Memphis and Clarksdale sidemen including special guest Big Jack Johnson, Cotton and Mathus concocted a modern-day jam session with all the boisterous spirit of a classic down-home revival.
“[Cotton] insists on creating new blues for modern times, and the results, raucously boozy and righteously loose, are both like and unlike any blues you’ve ever heard before… borders on brilliance, albeit of a very ragged sort.” —Blues on Stage
“Riveting, rollicking and unique is more like it.” —Southland Blues
“Death — or some other danger — lurks around nearly every corner on Bay Area bluesman Chris Cotton's new solo CD...” —San Francisco Chronicle