Tom Robinson : top 10 favourite albums : number 8 : 1998 SOUL COUGHING – El Oso

The tragically short-lived Soul Coughing broke up in 1998 the same year they released this amazing second album. Frontman Michael Doughty was a master at marrying wonky leftfield vocals with memorable lyrics, and record manages to sound clear, sharp and punchy yet dangerously unpredicatable and offkilter – as if anything could happen at any moment – which it frequently does. But for me the killer ingredient is the band’s Israeli-born drummer Yuval Gabay. He brings a hiphop slacker attitude to what’s essentially a rock record and makes the whole thing groove like a bastard. Gabay’s clanky snaredrum whacking out those lazy backbeats is THE sound of El Oso and one I could listen to for hours. All the band’s ex members have done interesting things over the intervening years, but for my money this was their finest hour.

For number 9 in Tom Robinson’s top 10 favourite albums please go here

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