Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood – Nancy & Lee

nancy&lee_coverTacky taffy? Like Dimitri Tiomkin soundtracks, the corny, chintzy confection (i.e., stock orchestra and grain-tank reverb) of this curio exceeds kitsch because of the slightly removed and unaffected manner in which it’s received. Not supple, but not unconsidered, a nippy sort of hush prevents these doleful, deadpan duets — between a saucy 16-year-old and a 40-year-old truck driver — from getting pigeonholed. The fact that Hazlewood, a checkered semistar who wrote twanged hits for Duane Eddy, can’t be categorized easily, (and that only in retrospect is such pabulum spied as fortuitously parodic), makes him a kook, not a genius — someone for whom fads are a safe haven against the always uncertain future. Marginal pluses: “Jackson,” “Lovin’ Feelin’,” and “Some Velvet Morning.”

Rating: B-

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