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What the Toll Tells

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Two Gallants - 'What the Toll Tells'
by: Richard Terry

It has been rumoured that in certain South Yorkshire haunts, fake tales of San Francisco echo around the room. However, with singer Chelsea Jackson sounding like he is living every impassioned lyric, there appears to be little fake about this, the second LP from 'frisco based duo Two Gallants. Not having heard their debut, this reviewer was led to expect something different to what is delivered by the comparisons made to The White Stripes. Other than the fact there are two members of the band, and they both owe a debt to Country music, the comparison is as lazy as labeling Michael Flatley 'the new Lionel Blair'. That said, on hearing opener Las Cruces Jail one can't help thinking that alt Country hasn't sounded so good since Hotel Yorba.

It is on tracks such as the stunning Steady Rollin' and Lazy Summer Day, that Two Gallants really come into their own. The former is a contemporary Blues song that makes lyrics such as 'if you've got a throat, I've got a knife' sound strangely romantic while Lazy Summer Day is a haunting tale of persecution and retribution that showcases Jackson's ability to put a story to music. Fantastic stuff.

If you are one of those cynics who couldn't comprehend Alex Turner writing his lyrics then you really won't be able to fathom how Chelsea Jackson has written "What the Toll Tells". Lyrics that defy their age and a racket that defies their sum it is hard not to fall in love with this band. Crack open the Southern Comfort and enjoy some tales from San Francisco.