Bakelite 78 (from the E.P. 5 Hits from Heck)
Torch lit stages, thick red curtains, and hand-painted scenery are the backdrop for the theatrical music of Bakelite 78 on their recent E.P. release, 5 Hits from Heck. The Seattle, Washington-based group follows marching drumbeats and salvation army horns to deliver “Nine for Nine”, melts the skid row cabaret of “Liquor and Lotto” with psychedelic guitar distortion, and swings to Dixieland strums for the horror show story line of “Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire”. Founded in Chicago in 2000, Bakelite 78 performed in Chicago clubs until 2008, capping off the tenure in the city with the Jimbo Mathus-produced Delta Disc (2008).
Robert Rial moved the gothic Jazz-Americana Lounge music west to Seattle, along with his 78 RPM collection, to set to expand on the possibilities of dance band swing and dixieland with a new, more filled out, lineup. 5 Hits from Heck gallops in on Gypsy Blues for the western tale of Billy the Kid with “Who Rides with Billy” as Bakelite 78 tango into the footlights as they roll back the smoldering gauze screen with opener “Absolutely Fireproof (O Iroquois)”.