“Las Cruces Jail” b/w “Long Summer Day”
Two Gallants are a young San Francisco two-piece who make a heck of a lot of noise with just a guitar and drums. They owe much to both Johnny Cash and Woody Guthrie, and they play with such musicianship and passion that it’s hard to pin them down as simply folk, country, punk or blues. “Las Cruces Jail” is the swaggering murder ballad of an unrepentant killer sentenced to die at the gallows. “Long Summer Day” is the tale of a black man who’s endured all the racism his pride will stand. When he finally sets out to kill the white man who denied him his vote, he cries, “If I’m dead by sunrise, kiss my baby girl for me, because it ain’t life if it ain’t free.” Both sides of this single deliver a bare-knuckled beauty that will leave you breathless.