For whatever reason, over the last week or two I’ve actually, somewhat, sort of been able to write about records and stuff. It’s Kind of hard to say why, but I’ve worked on both issues #4 and #5 of my zine, which should make for an interesting release schedule, especially since I don’t think I’ll have a way to scam copies of said articles and said articles are not to be paid for when copying. That’s a rule of law. I’ve been fancily dancily writing on this here blog a bit too. I even, maybe, possibly, started a podcast. Though there are some technical complications that I am having a bit of time over coming. We shall see, shant we? We shan!
So, I’m a bit looped on codeine at the moment. My head is stuffed and I am listening to the new Murder By Death album called Good Morning, Magpie released on the fine people at Vagrant records. The volume is down low, due to physiological senses, but that doesn’t mean the title track isn’t piercing through though. In fact it is this title track that bridges all that we know and love about Murder By Death with all that they have begun to explore on this album. The post punk tendencies are all but quashed this time around, giving way to explore succinctly the tender, more Americana aspects they’ve operated under over the last ten years. They get all Tom Waits on “You Don’t Miss Twice (When You’re Shaving With a Knife)”, invoke The Pogues on “As Long As Their is Whiskey in the World” and just flat out blow you away with the moving, face paced ballad “Foxlove”. Redtooth and Claw, the previous effort felt like it tread too much upon past territory, and Murder By Death close it out in comfortable fashion with the eerie “White Noise” and dusty setting of “The Day”. Should they play this album from start to finish, it’s easy to think that these last two tracks were part of the back catalog. But even these songs have more in common with the current set then anything previous. Good Morning, Magpie might be less of hybrid and more straight forward, but for Murder By Death it shows their strength and really showcases Adam Turla as a fantastic songwriter.He’s been compared to Johnny Cash in the past, both unfairly and unfortunately, but those same plains and fields are ever present, the music spoken with a similar vernacular. I was expecting more of the same, despite the reviews, but this is a refreshing change, not unfamiliar, but also completely new.
So, you know how I know I am getting old? I’m picking up new bands by listening to Public Radio. This week alone, there were two very peculiar bands offered up at me. The first was Buke&Gass as duo from Brooklyn of all unfortunate places lauded by Radiolab. This duo made modified baritone guitars and bass ukuleles, got some percussions activated by there feet and make some of the most beautiful noise I’ve ever heard. Once I get the album I’ll do a full review, but man, go check out the podcast if you can. The other band was pitched by none other than Kurt Anderson, who is like the coolest, dorkiest old man with his Studio 360 show. I’m not always sure I trust Kurt’s taste, being a life long New Yorker I questions his filters. But he did play Take it Easy Hospital, a pair of expat Iranian’s who are in a new movie and have a debut EP out. The movie is called No One Knows about Persian Cats which is a movie about two Iranian musicians that play in the way underground and are forced to flee Iran due to political pressure for playing Western Music. That’s kind of an oversimplification of the story, but you know, work with me. I’m breathing weird fumes. The EP, Human Jungle is a dance rock inspired bit of revelry. The female vocals leave a little to be desired, I’m not going to lie, but the music is infectious. Almost reminiscent of The Rapture if they were more interested in making something actually danceable and a little more into Radiohead and a little less into Prince. The bass lines are absolutely swanky, the guitar work is unreal and the drumming is solid. By far the best track on the offering is “Me and You”, which is sung in Farsi (if I am not mistaken, and if I am please correct me) and based on a traditional Iranian poem (again the origin escapes me and I am too lazy to go back and listen to the podcast, but you can and should do so here). It’s pretty freaky music my friends. Recommended to you to ease the stress of a respiratory infection for sure.
I kinda went apeshit on iTunes today for no other reason then I am sick and I can’t get my shit together. I bought a bunch of singles from No Idea Records (including the The Measure (SA)/Ergs Splits and both the new Small Brown Bike singles) as well as the Mi Ami single “Cut Men b/w Out at Night” which is so much better then their debut LP Watersports. They also have a new album out that I hope to check out shortly. Also, I heard a new track off the freshly released Medications album Completely Removed which sounds nothing like the jockular, over drive riff rock shit they used to play. I am thinking about checking that album too. But I am gaurded and skeptical.
Well I gotta go shell out forty bucks for some part so I can have a kitchen sink or some shit. Never buy a house. Its total bullshit and selling them is bullshit too. I just want to go to sleep and instead I am waiting for shit. Houses are bullshit. Fucking hell codeine fucks you up. Ain’t doing shit for this cough or pain though.