The gritty Americana-tinged music of Rodney DeCroo has always had a powerful lyrical side, both mesmerizing and wrenching. The acclaimed singer-songwriter’s words fill the tracks on such searing albums as War Torn Man and Queen Mary Trash with images of a life haunted by pain and tragedy.
So DeCroo’s shift to the role of poet is a natural one. In the wake of his recent record Allegheny (reviewed here in the Straight as “raw, captivating, and essential”) comes his new collection of poetry Allegheny, BC (Nightwood Editions).
A handful of the 40-plus works here also appear on the record, recited by DeCroo over brooding soundscapes created by Robert Malowany. Together, they create a portrait of early years spent in Pennsylvania coal towns and the wilderness of northern B.C., shot through with desperation and violence, as well as with an almost defiant sense of beauty.
DeCroo will launch Allegheny, BC this Saturday (September 22) with a combination reading/concert, at Little Mountain Gallery (East 26th Avenue and Main Street). The lineup also boasts fellow musicians Doug Andrews, Torsten Muller, the Minimalist Jug Band, and Christie Rose.
Tickets are $10 at the door, which opens at 7:45 p.m. The show starts at 8:15.