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Bayou Boys Blowing In From Swamp

Bayou Boys Blowing In From Swamp

Who: Psycho Zydeco
Where: Hotel Metro
When: Sunday January 29, 2006

EACH member of blues outfit Psycho Zydeco is Australian through and through.

But after listening to the band's mix of cajun and zydeco music you could almost swear they had emerged straight out of the swamps of Louisiana.

Psycho Zydeco was formed in 1991 by accordionist Stefan Sernek and guitarist Gregg Hatton after they discovered a shared love of cajun and zydeco music.

They assembled custom-made instruments such as washboards and triangles and combined them with the squeezebox and R&B- style guitar.

Later joined by saxophonist Chris Wilson and drummer Gene Gill, the band started exploring the many variations of zydeco and cajun.

Tasmanian-born Gill said he blamed long-time friend Wilson for his involvement in Psycho Zydeco.

``At first I thought it might be some kind of death-metal hybrid with a name like that,'' Gill said.

``I think drumming- wise, zydeco has the simplicity and drive of rock, blues or even folk beats layered with the insistent syncopated rhythms you would find in African music or similar.'' Performances in the Sydney area have earned the group a solid reputation.

Their debut album, SwampBox, released in 1995, had them making regular appearances at festivals around Australia. Although Psycho Zydeco displayed a leaning towards the rhythm and blues of Clifton Chenier, Buckwheat and Rockin' Dopsie, the group picked up on the more folk and cajun styles complete with creole French lyrics and ringing giant triangle.Despite their fascination with these American styles, the band believe the Psycho Zydeco sound has an undeniably Australian quality that is their own.Other highlights for the band include appearances at the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival and the Zydeco Factory Tour which saw the band undertake an extensive tour of Australia, and ended with a rousing finale in front of thousands at the Woodford Folk Festival. ``The success of our overseas tours along with the evolution of our recordings is something I'm quite proud of ... and to win over a first time audience is a big thrill,'' Wilson said. Psycho Zydeco will play at the Hotel Premier , Broadmeadow, on Sunday from 4.30pm.

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