A much molested idiom, the blues has thankfully long since been rested from the hands of the purists, its worst abusers. In part we can thank Jon Spencer and Jack White but perhaps the greatest debt of gratitude is owed to Fat Possum, a label which since the early 90’s has championed the raw sounds of Model T.Ford, the late R.L Burnside and Junior Kimbrough as well as Bob Log III, a self styled “one man guitar party”.
Dressed in a one-piece jump suit and a motorcycle helmet with a silvered visor, an old telephone serving as a microphone, Bob Log III made his introductions, “Ladies and gentlemen, this is my guitar. She’s come a long way and she wants to see some Germans dance.”
The Hasil Adkins-ish chicken scratch rhythms, augmented with a kick drum with a tambourine taped to it and a similarly outfitted cymbal, proved hard to resist. “Well then Berlin do you wanna dance? If you do you gotta do it right, in a puddle of your own come. Then you’re gonna git pregnant.”
Describing the development of his sound, a no-fi snarl of tangled down tuned strings and primitive Mississippi stomp/slide blues, Log claims to have added the cymbal only because one leg was becoming noticeably larger than the other. Claims that one of his hands had been replaced with a lightning fast monkey paw backfired in Prague where angry amputees demanded a refund.
Complaining that a dog had eaten his set list, a pair of willing victims, Lara and Maya, were recruited from the audience and perched nervously on his knees. As they were bounced up and down Bob cackled, “This is a love song. Hell I can’t believe this shit actually works.”
Some R.C jiggery pokery and a drum machine allowed Bob to venture from the stage, soliciting kisses and tequila for the soundman. “Ich liebe Berlin. Let’s make a baby.”
Summoned back to the stage by cries of “Zugabe” after what must have been a physically exhausting set, the audience were informed, “I’m gonna play one more song since that motherfucker locked the door to backstage and won’t let me back in – hey I need my pants. Guess that’s one way to get an encore.” In fact we were treated to several ditties including the puerile (and rather wonderful) Boob Scotch, a paean to his twin muses.