Monday, July 9, 2012
Red Jacket Mine - Bellar & Bawl on Fin Records
The never ending conveyor belt of singles from the Fin Records factory keeps right on rolling and I'm starting to realize you'd need to start your own blog to keep up. They must run a tight ship over there with deadlines and teams of artists designing sleeves, lining up recording sessions...a whiteboard of upcoming projects, phones ringing off the hook...like the trading floor of the stock exchange, but for singles. We can dream.
Lincoln Barr is the mastermind behind the bedroom 4 track project that was became early Red Jacket Mine. That kind of dense experimentation comes through on this latest single from Fin Records where Lincoln's sparkling hyper-pop has been distilled from raw innovation with Andrew Salzman and Matthew Cunningham bringing their own live performances to the recording. His previous single on Fin brought together a lot of the masters pop, from the session groove of Steely Dan to the indie pop of Kurt Heasley on both of these brief samples for a full length out later this year.
A-Side's "Bellar & Bawl" is a slick, clear, rocking and rolling number with those glittery doubled up vocals and polished handclaps. A sort of country honkey tonk sound, with it's share of piano flourishes and harmonious backup vocals. He's one of those talented songwriters who's absorbed a tremendous amount of intelligent song craft and draws equally from across the board. This results not only in instrumentation but lyrics that you aren't going to really get until tomorrow. Picking up heavily on the Squeeze sound, sort of timeless in that it's not tied distinctively to any trendy genres.
B-Side's "Grow Your Own" has got these subtle strums and an odd tom beat, Lincoln's got an enthusiastic vocal and slight reverb on his almost 50's bopper sound, maybe that's where the Elvis Costello references come from, it's an equally strong, unique vocal tying all sorts of classic early rock and roll. A similar kind of do-wop soul sound once removed; simultaneously a condemnation and celebration about that particular era. It's the kind of thing that should actually be in a jukebox somewhere in a highway diner, the middle of nowhere....scratchy,coming out of a crappy speaker. It would actually give you some kind of energy to finish that roadtrip. Incredibly emotive, dense disjointed lyric narrative, complex songwriting that might even be his undoing at times. But then damn I'm into this crunchy, alien distortion solo that pops up towards the end of this, completely out of place, and I appreciate that borderline unlistenable sound... that hes going to take a chance on that.
Download card included on clear orange vinyl with the usual embossed stamping and color inner sleeves...get it from Fin Records.