I am a big advocate of blindly buying records. You honestly don’t know what you’re missing if you never branch out and buy albums that are not on your radar. However, I will admit that I sometimes take this notion to the extreme.
My girlfriend and I went to Europe for a vacation and I was very much looking forward to being able to dig through the bins of a Czech record store. Once inside I was even more excited to find a whole section dedicated to Czech music. I could have spent hundreds of dollars buying random shit, so I had to control myself.
How did I decide on this particular record when it is written in Czech? I immediately recognized two words: Chuck Berry.
Yes, this record has a Chuck Berry cover on it. I recognized K.T. Oslin as well (attributed to Kay T. Oslin), but it was Chuck Berry that jumped out at me.
What does it sound like? 80s country music. Seriously.
Specifically, it sounds like the country music I grew up hearing on the small show stages at Opryland USA in Nashville.
Country music in the 80s was very much split in a similar way to today. There was country-pop with an almost electronic sound and dance beat and then there was a more traditional country sound that focused more on instrumentation. Vytoč Můj Telefon is, just like the shows I saw at Opryland as a kid, a marriage of the two.
This album sounds like it was influenced musically by Charlie Daniels and Alabama. It is very focused on the musicianship, it features some incredible picking and grinning, and the traditional sound goes so far as to have an almost Dixieland feel to it.
The vocal work on Vytoč Můj Telefon is definitely a copy of 80s female country singers such as Barbara Mandrell, Roseanne Cash, or The Judds. It is obvious that the vocalists for Newyjou were emulating the styles of the popular American country musicians.
This album was released in 1990, but it definitely feels dated in the earlier part of the 80s. My guess is that communism in Czechoslovakia kept them a little behind the times.
I am tempted to write to the fan club and see what happens.
I didn’t know that I needed communist Czechoslovakian country music in my life, yet here I am.
My favorite track: Serióznost Není Tvůj Styl (You Never Can Tell)