Mr. Quintron | JamSkate EP (s/r)

Mr. Quintron—or Robert Rolston to those who knew him in Florissant—provides a basic, plain-structured EP with music that is anything but bland.

 

With the Thurtene Carnival this weekend and hints of summer seeping through the clouds, Mr. Quintron and Miss Pussycat have just the EP to blast out of car windows. It's a five-track sampler with the title-track JamSkate and an instrumental version of it, a Kajun SS cover of "Drug Problem," "Wild West" (not a Will Smith cover), and the skit "Mobile Float."

Mr. Quintron—or Robert Rolston to those who knew him in Florissant—provides a basic, plain-structured EP with music that is anything but bland. He is true to his prior work with frequent organ solos, drum-machine beats left simple to encourage dancing, and Mr. Quintron's untrained voice floating over the synthesized sounds in a hypnotic tone.  

While Quintron has more of a raw, rock-oriented approach than James Murphy's perfected dance-punk, the two are quite similar lyrically. Both artists' major singles, LCD's "Daft Punk is Playing at My House" and "North American Scum," and Quintron's "Place Unknown" and "JamSkate," preach to the teenage audience, asking them "to throw a party 'til the cops come in and bust it up," and "party 'til you puke and dance until you break the floor." "We're gonna Jam/ JamSkate into love" is the addictive chorus that only adds to the upbeat blend of ice cream truck and carnival music. If Quintron's best poetry—"But when we're out on the floor/ Rolling around/ Everything is all right like life on a cloud"—isn't enough, then you can skip to the instrumental version, make a mash-up, sing over it, or simply play it while cruising chicks.

There is still more to offer with the other tracks. Mr. Quintron is proud of his New Orleans citizenship and a major player in the swamp music scene. Kajun SS is a hardcore-punk band whose songs rarely reach the two-minute mark. In addition to being featured in the impressive, Jay Reatard-mastered, Static Party compilation last year, Mr. Quintron lends the band a hand by covering "Drug Problem." Kajun SS's version is deeply rooted in Dead Moon-style, just a few notches angrier, and by the end of the song the listener is convinced of his drug problem. On the other hand, you can dance past Mr. Quintron's drug problem, which seems to be of half problem, half celebration.  

There isn't much to "Wild West," but it's definitely worthy of being heard. Quintron's wife, Miss Pussycat, who also does some backup vocals in "Drug Problem," makes her greatest contribution on this track on vocals and tambourine. The skit makes for a funny closer that I won't spoil. If I am not mistaken, Mr. Quintron himself is doing the talking.

I doubt you will be able to get a hold of the limited 500-release vinyl so be sure to download it off their site, and in the meantime head over to Mr. Quintron's MySpace to hear JamSkate. As far as a follow-up to 2005's Swamp Tech/Electric Swamp is concerned, let's keep our fingers crossed, but this EP is a great start.

Still no St. Louis show in sight, but St. Louis has been witness to Mr. Quintron performances since 2000, including an opening slot for the White Stripes, a Gargoyle date, and a Creepy Crawl performance last July that came in #3 of my top 10 shows of '06. | Joseph O'Fallon

 

Currently the tour schedule looks like this:

04.20 | The Spanish Moon, Baton Rouge; 04.21 | The Orange Show, Houston; 04.28 | The Mother-in-Law Lounge, New Orleans; 07.12 | Jackson, Miss. | 07.13 | The High Tone, Memphis; 07.14 | Low Key Arts, Hot Springs; 07.15 | The Conservatory, Oklahoma City; 07.16 | Omaha; 07.17-22 | Minneapolis Puppet Festival; 07.22 | Reversible Eye, Chicago; 07.24 | Birmingham; 07.25 | Mobile; 07.26 | Saturn Bar, New Orleans; 07.28 | Lafayette, La.

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