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CD OF THE WEEK (February 1999) :

P. VAN SANT "Me & The Guitar Man"
(PINK RECORDS 1998 - TOE 980805)

Songs (click on the -icons for audio)
1. Me and the Guitarman
2. Can't change the weather
3. Walkin'
4. Too hot to handle
5. Berlin '44
6. You say you don't (but I know you wanna)
7. Mona
8. Uncle Joe
9. On the edge of a razoblade
10. The Black Rose Café
11. Long as I got you

Musicians :
- P. Van Sant (vocals, guitars, dobro, tambourin, sandpaper shoe stompin')
- Wouter Planteydt (guitars, percussion, background vocals & bass guitar)

Guests :
-Gert Jan Blom (double bass, whales)
- Theo Van Kampen (harmonica's)
- Richard Heijerman (drums)

Produced & mixed by Wouter Plantedt
Recorded at DDL studio, Amsterdam, summer of '98

Photography : Peter De Bruyne, Art Direction : Triumvir[a]t

Press Release

Didn't obtain a press release from Pink Records, so here are some little facts about P. Van Sant.

- P. Van Sant's full name is Peter VanSantevoet.
- He was noted for the first time in the early eighties when his band The Boxcars got to the final of Humo's Rock Rally in 1982.
- After the split of this group, Sante, as he then called himself, went on to form dozens of other bands. For instance he participated in different editions of Marktrock from 1990 to 1995 under names such as "The New Boxcars", "Sante & The New Boxcars", "Double Aces".
- In 1996 het made his solo-debut with "This Hounddog's still howlin'", on which the other musicians are people like Vincent Pierins, Cesar Janssens, Raf Timmermans en Ludo Beckers.
- "Me & The Guitarman" was released by the Dutchman Arthur Praet (Pink Records), who gave P. the stimulation to give himself an acoustic performer profile, and signed him on his second label Toe Records, a record label with only singer-songwriters (among who Vera Coomans, Planteijdt ..). This last one, known from the Dutch bands Raggende Manne and Sjako!, was the producer of the album.

In the press:

- De Morgen, Februari 10th, 1999: "On his second cd P. Van Sant lets himself be known as a singer-songwriter in the best American tradition. His voice that has ripened in smoky bars rubs so eagerly against folk, country and swampblues that you might think you've landed in the Mississippi-delta. Doesn't matter how hard the winter hits, with a cd like this at hand.".
- Teek (January 1999) : "American reliability : grinding guitars, a voice that mixes John Hiatt with Johnny Cash and songs that melt in your ears and pay tribute to the late Townes Van Zandt & Bob Dylan.".
- Stage (January 1999) : "In these days of high technology ... there are still weirdo's left that do great things with the simplest of means. Usually they perform their thing undergrond, just as P. Van Sant (39) who recorded a full album in his 3 by 3 basement in 1996 .... That same artist now steps out of his basement to surprise the world with "Me & The Guitarman"".

Did you see a good (or bad) review of the album ? Send it to me !

My opinion

Lowbudget, small-scale, but charming piece of music, this.
Peter Vansantevoet, ex-Boxcars, ex-Sante ... now is walking around under the alias P. Van Sant. After his basement retreat turned out to be a one-way street to oblivion, he met a few musicians in Holland, as well as a record firm that was interested in his work. Good for both, because during the aforementioned period Peter had written enough songs for a complete album.The result of their cooperation has been lying in the shops for some months now, under the name "Me & The Guitarman".
The titletrack, first track of the album as well, is immediately the best song on it, through it's interesting melody, theme and attention building. The closing track of the album, the tin drum sound of "Long as I got you" also gets an award from me. In between those two are 9 other songs, drawing from differen blues & singer/songwriter traditions (Springsteen, Loudon Wainwright came to my mind more than once). None of those 9 songs is completely bollocks, but there's always one or two elements that prevent it from being a completely well-succeeded song.
The singer has a mean low grunt in his voice, a trump that he likes to play towards the end of his lines or choruses, or to moan "Oh Mercy" somewhere in the middle. Less interesting is that he seems to lack a few teeth or something : if he sings for instance "Well I'm all mixed up, cause I still can't believe, I mistreated you honey", I've closed my eyes three times already out of fear of being covered in saliva. At the same time this is also an asset of this album, where the voice or guitars weren't changed to perfection, cleanliness & sterility, by means of 10 digital filters. The sound of the album is, as a result of this approach, warm and cosy.

And your opinion?
Did I get it all wrong, or was I spot-on ? Do you want to share your opinion about this cd ? Send it in, and I'll put it up here !

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More about this group :

- Marketing & Distribution :
Pink Records BV, PO Box 488, 9200 AL Drachten, The Netherlands
tel : +31(0)512.525085, Fax : +31(0)512.525992

 

Where to buy this CD ?

You can order this CD from a number of locations (prices researched on Janyary 4th, 1999, but nothing guarantees they still are the same when you read this).

Shop
Price of the CD
Shipping + other expenses
Total
Link
Frontstage
669
50
719 BEF
Azur
---
0
---
 
HVH-Megastore
---
54
---
 
Proxis
618
95
703 BEF

The Lowest price is in yellow, the highest in red. This price comparison doesn't take things into account like deduction of shipping expenses when ordering more than 1 cd, bonus points, differences in guarantees ... Shipping prices are those for customers in Belgium.

Have you seen this record elsewhere, do you own a CD-shop with Belgian products in it, or if there's something wrong with my calculations : let me know.

 

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