Toned down and low-key are not words that leap immediately to mind when describing Eddie Spaghetti. In his regular gig as the front man for The Supersuckers, there isn't much call for subtlety. His solo efforts - "Sundowner" is his third - lean more to country than rock, and there's a lot more restraint on display. On an album that consists mainly of covers, he avoids overemphasizing stylistic differences, and instead delivers straightforward versions of songs from Johnny Cash (What Do I Care?
), Willie Nelson (Always on My Mind)
, Del Reeves (Girl on the Billboard
) and Dave Dudley (Cowboy Boots
Restraint is even more evident in the covers of the Dwarves' If You Fall in Love and Jesus Never Lived on Mars, originally from ex-Supersucker Rick Sims' The Lee Harvey Oswald Band. The originals are loud and punky, and while Spaghetti's versions maintain a driving beat and some nifty guitar riffs, the volume of noise is low enough that you can actually understand the vocals. Given the potentially offensive nature of Jesus Never Lived on Mars, that may not be a good thing, depending on who is in earshot.
"Sundowner" offers no earth-shattering re-imaginings of either the classics or the not-so-classics. But Eddie Spaghetti sounds like he had a good time laying down these tracks, and sometimes that's all that's needed to make an album work.