Search - Gurf Morlix :: Toad of Titicaca

Toad of Titicaca
Gurf Morlix
Toad of Titicaca
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #1

Best known for his 11-year stint as guitarist-producer for Lucinda Williams, Gurf Morlix offers some unclassifiable roots-folk-rock of his own on his solo debut. His often-thin voice, which can convey a simpatico vulnerabi...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Gurf Morlix
Title: Toad of Titicaca
Members Wishing: 5
Total Copies: 0
Label: Catamount
Original Release Date: 4/11/2000
Release Date: 4/11/2000
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 690403100423

Best known for his 11-year stint as guitarist-producer for Lucinda Williams, Gurf Morlix offers some unclassifiable roots-folk-rock of his own on his solo debut. His often-thin voice, which can convey a simpatico vulnerability, is still not always the strongest possible vehicle for his own material, but after that it's hard to find fault. He's adept at blending folk instruments (jug, banjo, mandocello) to create a homey atmosphere on "Robin Sings at Midnight," while "You Don't Know Me" is a nasty, motorvatin' rocker. Performances like "Rainin' on Me," "Rock Bottom," and the solo closer "Fallin' Off the Face of the World" are devastating, while "Dan Blocker" is hilarious. And Morlix is simply a great American guitar stylist, with a bright, delicate touch that rocks hard when it needs to. This is an eclectic yet seamless set, full of pleasures and surprises both large and small. --John Morthland

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CD Reviews

Gurf Morlix Hits the Mark on "Toad of Titicaca"
K8-EEE | North Hollywood, CA United States | 04/17/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This CD has been playing continuously at my house all weekend. It sounds great on first listen, and just keeps getting better.Standout tracks are "Wild Things," an infectious country/rock number, the bluesy "Rock Bottom," and the sweet ballad "Robin Sings at Midnight." In the "you have to hear it to believe it" category is "Dan Blocker." Only Morlix could construct a powerhouse anthem out of a song whose ONLY lyrics are: "Dan Blocker, Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, Pernell Roberts." Complete with Bonanza theme guitar riffs, be warned that if you're brave enough to listen to this song, you will be walking around singing "Dan Blocker" whether you want to or not!If you enjoyed Morlix's work on Grammy award winner Lucinda Williams' albums, this CD is a must-have. Austin music legend Gurf Morlix comes into his own on "Toad of Titicaca.""
Dan Blocker and then some. A nice surprise of an album.
N. Franus | Portland, OR | 06/07/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Gurf is the guitar player and co-producer for Lucinda Williams's albums, and he's part of that linkcestuous circle that always hits up Daniel Lanois somewhere in the middle, connecting dots along the way with Buddy Miller, Emmylou Harris, and either Donald Lindley or David Lindley. If you're into that thing/those folks, this one's certainly worth picking up: most of the album is reminiscent of Lucinda's noted style of slacky southern slinging-singing, with a gaggle of loud, acoustical instruments -- some of which you may have never heard before but promise to pay attention to once you've given it a listen (what's a Weissenborn or a mandocello, anyway?). And after a few listens, in fact, it's hard to notice who's influencing whom -- Williams rubbing off on Morlix, or the other way around? Whatever it is, it's nice because it's gritty; Gurf doesn't have the same voice Lucinda has. In fact, his voice isn't much at all. It's closer to Neil Young or Kermit the Frog when it's quiet -- an endearing vulnerability -- and a lot more like Bob Dylan when it isn't. And after a while I stop paying attention, because it's his collective sound (he plays most instruments and tracks on the album) that's catching me: in Falling off the Face of the World, it's the slow, quiet purdy feel that stops me in my tracks; the tone and lyrics to to Wild Things actually do feel more like a Maurice Sendak story (I don't think there's any relation); Robin Sings at Midnight sounds like what I imagine the dropping of 1 steel guitar, 1 banjo, 200 rubber balls and a long warpy saw into a big ol' boiling pot of pea soup might sound like. And then there's Dan Blocker, the song that inspired me to buy this album, which is a straight-ahead tribute to, well, Hoss on Bonanza. It's a four-minute song with plenty of nouns and only one verb...and very hard to erase from that running soundtrack in my brain.All good? Not exactly. Two or three tunes on this album reflect my hunch (based on the credits and liner notes) that Morlix probably recorded this whole album by himself, writing every song, playing nearly every instrument, cutting and producing the whole thing himself. He's great at what he does, but it sounds like the songs Feel Free and Leap of Faith could have used some outside thinking: they're polished, but a tad uninspired.Aside from that, this disc is two parts Lucinda, one part Bob Dylan, one part Neil Young, a dash of Wilco, a dash of Tom Waits and the Big Dude from a sixties tv show that also featured Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, Vernell Roberts. And that is, at least for this album, what makes up Gurf Morlix. (He's got a new album out now, as well, which I haven't heard yet. I'm hoping it'll be as juicy as this, but my wife's hoping for our sake that nothing's quite as catchy as Dan Blocker.)"
Terrific Album
K. Breeden | 11/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I tracked down this album after hearing "Dan Blocker" on XM. I figured anyone who could do a song like that and make it work had just the quirkiness I enjoy in a musician. Though none of the other offerings on the disc was an unusual as that one, I was not disappointed. Highly recommended. (Oh, and why are people dissing Gurf's voice? He's got a great voice that lends itself perfectly to his style of music.)"