Thursday, May 21, 2009

Another Green Mess

Oh no, blog neglect! Better post something before blogrot sets in... Sometimes I wonder why I pay attention to the hype on new bands, because the music is often disappointing. I hate to sound like an old crank, but the amount of new music out there has increased exponentially in the last two decades, and the quality can't possibly equal the volume. I guess I worry that I will miss something good if I don't try to keep up.

One pearl among the swine is the British trio Johnny Foreigner. I overlooked their album Waited up til It Was Light when it came out last year. I got it about a month ago and have been playing it almost daily since then. Each of the songs has been my favorite at one time or another. It's a frenetically noisy record (albeit very well-produced), so it takes a few listens before the songs sink their hooks into your brain. I soon found myself singing along with such unlikely phrases as "one green mess to another green mess" and "mutton dressed as mutton dressed as mutton dressed as lamb".

Singer/guitarist Alexei Burrows yelps like Black Francis or David Gedge, and singer/bassist Kelly Southern (who must inevitably suffer comparisons to Kim Deal) has a pleasing voice and a vicious scream. Burrows is an inventive guitarist (he often creates interesting melodic patterns by tapping the fretboard), and Junior the drummer is great too. The band won me over by quoting the dEUS classic "Hotellounge" on the ballad "Absolute Balance". There's a great fan site here, co-authored by the music writer J.Breitling.

Johnny Foreigner: Eyes Wide Terrified



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