After in IN YOUR FACE style of Hombre Lobo
, Mark Everett has returned to a stark semi acoustic style. I consider it beautiful but his most "down" album since Electro-Shock Blues
. In fact the track "A Line In The Dirt" which starts with the line " She locked herself in the bathroom again" I thought was going to deal with the suicide of his sister again, but in fact I consider deals with another personal relationship. Everett has a wonderful way with words, which as anyone who knows his work, he uses sparsely, but always to good effect - the song "Little Bird" paints the picture of loss so graphically yet wonderfully in only 16 lines!
On the main album, an interlude (as I would call it) is given a track listing, so in reality you only have 13 proper tracks with a running time of under 40mins. Whilst I have here the double album with a bonus 4 tracks EP that runs just under 10mins, why couldn't it have been all on one CD - a bit silly.
The bonus EP contains 4 really good songs so it is worth getting the "Deluxe Edition" if you can, and the packaging is a digipak with plastic (why?) inserts for the CDs.
All in all then an excellent album for fans of his work, but maybe not the the best place to start if you have not come across Eels before (try Beautiful Freak
or Daisies of the Galaxy
). If you want to know more about the man behind the band, Mark Oliver Everett, then I highly recommend his autobiography Things the Grandchildren Should Know
in which he tells the story of his (quite) tragic life with a heavy dose of humour - I'm sure you will not be disappointed.