Mike Doughty - Skittish/Rockity Roll (2 CDs)

This double-disc set brings together two solo albums by former Soul Coughing frontman Mike Doughty. Doughty's nasal twang and associative, image-filled lyrics made Soul Coughing one of the most distinctive cult bands of the 1990s, and those qualities are in full flower on the singer/songwriter's solo efforts. But Doughty's outings differ from Soul Coughing's funky, busy, sample-based music with their stark and stripped-down feel.

With only his acoustic guitar as accompaniment, Doughty creates a dark and mesmerizing ambience on SKITTISH, leaving ample room for his evocative wordplay and his wiry guitar and vocal phrasing. Occasional overdubs, such as the orchestral tones in "No Peace, Los Angeles" or the organ and vocal harmony tracks on "The Only Answer," flesh out the intimate, personal atmosphere of the album. Acoustic guitar also lays the foundation for the tunes on ROCKITY ROLL, though drum machines and synthesizers give the whole a nervy, lo-fi mood. The punchy pop of "27 Jennifers," for example, or the swirling New Wave vibe of "Down on the River by the Sugar Plant" keep things textured and varied. Five bonus tracks are tacked onto the end of ROCKITY ROLL, making this two-for-one release a real deal.

1. Only Answer, The
2. Pink Life, The
3. Real Love/It's Only Life
4. No Peace, Los Angeles
5. Where Have You Gone?
6. Thank You, Lord, For Sending Me The F Train
7. Looks
8. Shunned + Falsified
9. All The Dirt
10. Sweet Lord In Heaven
11. Language Barrier
12. Rising Sign

1. Ways + Means mp3
2. 27 Jennifers mp3
3. Down On The River By The Sugar Plant mp3
4. 40 Grand In The Hole mp3
5. Ossining mp3
6. Cash Cow mp3
7. Only Answer, The mp3
8. Move On (Bloom Like The Sunlight In My Song) mp3
9. I Failed To Use It mp3
10. Laundrytown mp3
11. Get Along mp3

Recorded circa 2000 - released as a set February 2004