Though he attracted a cult following on the basis of some recordings he did from the mid-'70s through the early '80s, George Brigman didn't release an album for a good quarter century prior to this 2007 CD. Though not as rawly produced as his early recordings, this disc is still pretty raw by early 21st-century standards, especially in the drumming department, though that might be a partial consequence of using four different drummers during the sessions. Sometimes a lengthy gap like this results in a notable erosion of skills, or at least a noticeably diminished fire in the belly. On Rags in Skull, however, Brigman sounds much like he did back in his youth, though not as recklessly energetic or idiosyncratic. He remains an imaginative blues-rock-based guitar player skilled at devising subtle wah-wah, fuzz, and sustain. He does sound somewhat smoother on this outing, both on instrumentals with rather graceful melodicism and on vocal numbers whose lyrics have a somewhat angrier, more tormented tone than his rather good-natured vocal delivery indicates. That's not always the case; "Some of My Best Friends Are Snakes" is about as nasty as you'd expect from the title, and has the album's most ferocious and distorted guitar work. That's the quality some of his die-hard fans covet the most, yet the most impressive track is the closing instrumental "Swell," in which Brigman showcases his entire bag of effects or textures, or something close to it.