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Standout Track: No. 6, “Countach,” a diversion from the Cassettes’ typical blend of self-described “mystic country” and tripped-out rockabilly. Taking its title from the Italian sports car, the revved-up howler blends redneck-rock riffs, relentless drums, and theremin, as heard on countless sci-fi movie soundtracks and the Beach Boys’ “Good Vibrations.”
Musical Motivation: Cassettes frontman Shelby Cinca says “Countach” is the story of a “Navajo warrior who comes forward in time” and “calls for humanity to hit reset so we live in balance with the Earth again.” It’s also the name of the group’s latest album, released on limited-edition cassette that comes with a toy car and horse. “‘Countach’ was a working title that we had for a song we always wanted to write in the rock ’n’ roll spirit,” says Cinca, 32. “It’s a Sicilian slang word for ‘beautiful,’ and we feel that the Navajo Warrior returning is a beautiful idea. And it’s also awesome, like the car.”
Apocalypse How: The Cassettes—featuring Cinca on vocals and guitar, Saadat Awan, 33, on drums and tabla, Stephen Guidry, 28, on synthesizer and Arthur Harrison, 52, on theremin—have toured internationally, but they don’t plan on playing a reunion show if they break up in the next three years. “Hopefully the Mayan gods will return on Dec. 21, 2012 and will shake some things up in the major human consciousness,” Cinca says. “Then we won’t really have to cash in, since the idea of money will be negated when we are all extra-dimensional beings fighting against cosmic overlords in a massive, supernatural upheaval.”
The Cassettes play Saturday, Nov. 22, at the Black Cat.