Howlin’ Wind was the debut album by Graham Parker and The Rumour, released in 1976 to critical acclaim. The Rumour were mainly former pub rock scene musicians, including guitarist Brinsley Schwarz and keyboardist Bob Andrews of the band Brinsley Schwarz; Parker’s recent jobs included pumping gas at a filling station. The music is blend of rock and roll, R&B, reggae, and folk music, behind Parker’s searingly intelligent lyrics and passionate vocals. Critics likened Parker’s spirit to British punk rock, then in its early stage, and retrospectively to that of singer-songwriters Elvis Costello and Joe Jackson, who would release their debut records within a few years of Howlin’ Wind. Many of the album’s songs became live staples for the group, especially the reggae-tinged “Don’t Ask Me Questions,” which dismisses a malevolent God.
[via Jan Fex]