Having earned his stripes as a member of indie outfits Quilt and Woods, John Andrews is no newcomer. With “Bit By the Fang,” however, Andrews makes his solo debut (with imaginary band The Yawns) and the results are impressive.
Andrews began recording the 11-track platter while working at a Salvation Army in Lancaster, Pa. That’s when his commitments to Quilt and Woods intervened, forcing him to put the solo project on the back burner. Eventually Andrews decamped to his grandparents’ New Jersey home to put the final touches on “Bit By the Fang.”
There’s a ramshackle quality to the platter with its mix of psych-country and R&B, as Andrews introduces guitars, piano, lap steel and violins into the proceedings. Opener “Don’t Spook the Horses” sets the tone, and he also scores with personal favorite “I’ll Go to Your Funeral (If You Go to Mine),” “Hear Me Out,” the title track and “Pennsylvania.” Good stuff. (Jeffrey Sisk)