Hype is the primary killer of surprise. It can be crippling to decent works of art that will suffer under the weight of unrealistic expectation. But for the wunderkind from Omaha, there is a rather graceful delivery of the goods. With his warbling voice, and a sound that deftly skirts the boundaries of alt-country and lo-fi pop. With “I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning,” he has finally moved beyond “teen oddity” and into the realm of the genuinely talented. Not unlike his spiritual brethren Will Oldham (aka Palace), his music is wonderful juxtaposition to the insipid commercialism that is popular music. While earlier efforts had moments of brilliance they were also scarred with a few pretentious clunkers. This is an album to be savored from start to stop, while driving on a sunny day to moping on a rainy one.
Archive for May, 2005
10 years in the making. 10 long years, a handful of gorgeously dreary Mark Eitzel solo records, and a big void mostly filled by bands like Spain, Red House Painters when it comes to those desert island break-up records that just help you get through it. Eitzel and company are back though, and with “Love Songs” it is almost as if they hadn’t ever parted ways. This is a rock record through and through, guitars, drums and sweeping vocals that lift the music up from the lyrics which, if read by themselves, would make you weep. If this is your first whack at AMC you have a wonderful world to explore!
Waits is a real life living legend who couldn’t make an easy record if his life depended on it. But as we all know nothing good, or great for that matter, is ever easy. On “Real Gone” Waits recent junkyard symphony is in full swing, a cacophony of sounds accompanied by his trademark raspy howl. Gone are the days of lounge-lizard pristine piano ballads, but in its place is another sprawling epic about life’s loose ends – the little pieces that are usually left unnoticed. “Real Gone” is another jagged piece in a perfect puzzle.