On The Decay
It's almost Halloween which means that tomorrow's show will be wholly dedicated to that glorious day before All Saints Day. Halloween is such a great time for a radio dj, as it gives you yet another opportunity to pull out all those artists who have attempted to add their voice to the whole Hauntology conversation currently going on (ie. Burial, Kode 9 and Space Ape, The Good the Bad and the Queen, etc...), as well as all those great artists obsessed with ghosts (ie. Ghostface Killah, The Unicorns + a bazillion other Montreal bands).
For myself, I'm going to focus primarily on Sunset Rubdown, for a few reasons. First of all, listening to their debut ep as well as Random Spirit Lover it's hard to think of a musician who conjures up more Halloween related images than Spencer Krug.
Secondly (and somewhat fittingly), Sunset Rubdown are playing the Albert on Halloween, which should prove to be a great show.
Thirdly, and most importantly, I'm focusing on the album because it's FREAKIN' AWESOME! I think Carl Wilson is dead on proclaiming Random Spirit Lover along with Sandro Perri's Tiny Mirror to be two of the most beautiful sounding Canadian albums released this year (I would also add Frog Eye's Tears of the Valedictorian to that list). Really, the album hasn't left my cd player since I first put it in.
Random Spirit Lover is easily a step above much of the other work Spencer Krug has been involved in (Swan Lake, Frog Eyes and maybe the first SR Ep notwithstanding). It's chalk-full of those 'I'll Believe in Anything' moments where you catch yourself singing along with all your heart. Particularly the tracks 'Up on Your Leopard, Upon the End of Your Feral Days' and 'The Taming of the Hands that Came Back'. However the strength of the album lies in the middle with 'Colt Stands Up, Grows Horns' and 'Stallion' which are absolutely stunning. They're utterly disturbing tracks based around complex song structures written in such a way they haunt you long after hearing them. They're like a sonic version of Cronenberg's awesome flick Dead Ringers. It's these tracks that mark a significant departure from the cock-rock tendencies of Wolf Parade, and the 'look we're almost like Frog Eyes' aspects of previous Sunset Rubdown efforts (not to say Shut Up I'm Dreaming wasn't a good album, it just suffered from a bit of an identity crisis). Spencer Krug has never written anything remotely this complex or fascinating, and it's an true joy to hear.
So tune in tomorrow at 2pm on 101.5 (you can also listen online at www.umfm.com by the way)
Until next time.