On Friday September 9th, the highly anticipated debut album from The Horrible Crowes, titled ‘Elsie‘ will be released locally. The idea for the collaboration started at the end of last year and was formed out of the bond that Brian Fallon and Ian Perkins developed through their mutual love of music. “The two of us had this ritual where we’d go into the back of the bus at the end of the show and just start showing each other records,” Fallon explains, adding that PJ Harvey, Afghan Whigs and Joan As Police Woman were some of the acts that they exposed each other to during these sessions. “I’ve always wanted to experiment with the darker side of soul music and one day we were just like, ‘let’s write some songs and see what they sound like’ and it turned out that it sounded great.” While Fallon excels at inciting sing-alongs with the Gaslight Anthem, Elsie sees him turning his perspective inward and crafting something that’s unsettling in the best way possible. See below for more information, and opinion on the album.
Available September 9th via SideOneDummy / Shock
Pre-order on CD [Here] $21.99 + Free postage.
Pre-order on Vinyl [Here] $18.99 + Free postage.
1. Last Rites
3. Behold the Hurricane
4. I Witnessed a Crime
5. Go Tell Everybody
6. Cherry Blossoms
9. Mary Ann
10. Black Betty & the Moon
11. Blood Loss
12. I Believe Jesus Brought Us Together
For many, including myself, this album is one of the year’s more anticipated releases. For fans of The Gaslight Anthem, you’d be following the progress of this one, being Brian Fallon’s ‘other’ project, alongside longtime friend Ian Perkins, with recording assistance from various other musicians since they are technically just a two piece.
Described early on as a ‘night time’ type album, the two friends tip their hats to various musical influences on them, mostly from the soul arena. Brian has also noted that “What I’m doing here is so far removed from what the stuff we do in the Gaslight Anthem” which sparked curiosity even more. We’ve heard solo demo’s in the past, but the folk path is not something he wanted to wind up doing at this stage, and so, on the road, these two wrote this album on buses, backstages in all corners of the globe, Australia being one of the last destinations before they hit the studio to record it.
To be honest, albums like this are a pain in the arse to try and write about, you get set, ready to pump out a few lines, but before you can get on a roll, you are lost in the album, and just want to listen, down goes the pen as you once again slump into the lounge and soak it in. Upon first listen a month or so back, I was instantly impressed, weeks later I’m even more impressed. It is a very easy album to listen to, and the closer you listen, the more you will take from it, you’ll still be picking up little things 20 and 50 listens in.
It’s a thousand times better listened to than it is read about, so as really should be the way all the time, let the music do the talking with this one.
Everyone has those few albums you reach for when you just want to unwind, that’s where this one belongs. You can hang off every word, or you can have it in the background. Impossible to get away from the Gaslight Anthem comparisons, due to the unique vocal sound Brian has, and like they say, it is something on the other side of the fence from Gaslight, but it isn’t a hundred miles away either, so I can see GA fans latching onto this pretty easily too.
Lyrically it’s a very personal record, one of the many strong points, combine that with the vocal and musical delivery and it’s just brilliant whichever way you look at it. There are no highlights, because every single track is as great as the one before it, and best listened to as a complete album rather than single tracks. The production is perfect, and I cannot wait to get my hands on the vinyl and hear it all again with a few crackles throughout.
It’s going to take something pretty special to knock this one off it’s perch on my shelf of favourite releases of the year, I just cannot fault it, everything about it appeals to my taste and even now, with over a month of listens under the belt, it keeps on getting better with each listen.
When this one comes out, take a little time out with it. Best served in a quiet location with just yourself, some relaxing surrounds and your drink of choice at arms reach. Don’t get up until it’s over, and once it is, if you aren’t left impressed, you are a hard one to please.
I want to open up a dark underground whiskey bar / lounge, just so I can play this one over and over again.