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Los Straitjackets - What’s So Funny About Peace, Love And…album review

US instrumentalists aim Lowe

Cover art for Los Straitjackets - What’s So Funny About Peace, Love And…album

We’re told that after touring extensively as Nick Lowe’s backing band, masked Nashville surf instrumentalists Los Straitjackets couldn’t help but ask the question: “What would Nick Lowe’s songs sound like as instrumentals?”

The short answer, judging by these 13 instrumentals, is “The Shadows”. Because if you’re a fan of the more raucous, high-octane twang-stompers this band are best known for, you might find this a strangely sedate, mid-tempo affair.

Their treatment of his two biggest hits – the (almost) title track and Cruel To Be Kind – is slow, sweet and inventive. But let’s not kid ourselves – for all its kitsch decoration and retro associations, you can leave your surfboard in the closet and file this firmly under ‘easy listening’.