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The Meat Puppets flowered in the Arizona desert with a style so unique that it seemed as if no one in the band had ever heard music of any kind. In fact, behind their weird psycho-country-rock was a group with enormous appeal that quickly became an eighties cult favorite. Led by the Texas-born Kirkwood brothers, the band grew more polished (with the big hit “Backwater” in ’94), but when sibling Cris spiraled into drug abuse, singer-guitarist CURT KIRKWOOD moved his franchise to Austin and debuted a decidedly heavier band. SNOW (Little Dog) is Curt’s first solo album, and it sounds a lot like early Pups, with quieter, slightly more conventional backing. It’s quirky and enchanting, but with one oddity: virtually no guitar solos. Given Curt’s propensity to tear off riffs of Coltrane-like majesty, this is akin to Hendrix’s recording an album while wearing mittens.