Slide guitar began with the "diddley bow," or a wire nailed to a wall and raked with a blade, piece of glass or maybe a stone, which gave rise to a chilling and elastic cry, the sound of pain and pleasure fused together. If the early diddlers could have plugged in, they might have sounded something like Ted Drozdowski of the Scissormen, a primordial blues guitarist who assaults his strings with anything from a Zippo to a cell phone to a boot heel. Taking a cue from the elastic, jammed-out trance-blues of Junior Kimbrough, the Scissormen knows the tradition but shows little concern for upholding it for its own sake. Instead, the band takes a collective jackhammer to blues forms to find the molten bedrock of temptation, joy and scorching salvation that churns underneath.
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