The band was started by Dan Stuart and JD Foster after wondering whether they could rediscover their musical innocence. Mr. Stuart was the leader of 80's legends Green On Red and half of Danny & Dusty while Mr. Foster is a sought after producer and sideman (Calexico, Patty Griffin etc.). The album was produced by Antonio Gramentieri who along with percussionist Diego Sapignoli provided instrumental support and inspiration. The songs were written in NYC, recorded in Richmond, Virginia and mixed in Senigallia, Italy. Despite their collective artistic experience, the members insist the slummers are a club of amateurs in spirit and purpose. Gentlemen all, you can take them at their word:
"Let us now celebrate the amateur, pure of heart and motive, in it only for the experience. here we beckon, come slum with us, downtown and beyond, the love never stops…"
Mr. Stuart and Mr. Foster co-wrote the compositions, share vocals and play guitars along with other assorted contraptions. Mr. Gramentieri and Mr. Sapignoli fill in with everything from baritone guitar to vibraphone. The record starts with the Beefheart absurdity of "Rift Valley Evolutionary Blues" and ends with the hopefully plaintive "Waiting For You". The material runs from the Wire inspired "Bread and Water" and Keith meets Nino Rota of "Bowery Boy" to the George Jones purity of "All About You". The most intimate and hair raising track is "Ironbound", one take only, Foster's vocal haunts. Mr. Gramentieri's production touches are eclectic and sublime and suggest a distinct move away from the ho hum ghetto of alt/country Americana whatever. Bravo maestro!