The Jackdaw – Tales of a blonde wig
American and British humour are two very different things, both highly indicative of the culture from which they’ve sprung. American humour usually deals with the misfortune of others, while the Brits tend to laugh at their own misgivings.
Rock is filled with songs about drinks and bars. Here too, the Yanks and the Limeys tend to have entirely different perspectives on things. American drinking songs sound positively heroic. Every one of them seems to take place in the friendliest boozer on Earth. A night out on the town in the U.K. though sounds absolutely terrifying, as if being stabbed by a lad wielding a broken bottle is always on the menu.
The Jackdaw’s Tales of a blonde wig echoes the danger and fun of a night out somewhere in England. The group manages to integrate the post-punk tension of groups like The Fall, and the effervescence and cleverness of bands like the Arctic Monkeys. As British as missing a decisive penalty in the European Championship.
Rough Dreams – Cursed at the Sun
Most great, modern songwriters possess a terrible secret. Their record collection might look good now, but, at one point during their youth, they spent countless hours listening to their parents’ Phil Collins and Bruce Springsteen records.
Turns out this is not such a bad thing after all. Sure, there are kids whose parents have all the cool vinyl. They’re told from an early age that Led Zeppelin and Rush are the greatest. But, they end up forming Greta van Fleet. No, most great, future musical identities are formed out of pop music.
Eventually though, of course, many of these kids discover other, angrier, more expressive styles of music. The urgency and honesty of punk-rock waits for these just round the corner. Rough Dreams’ Cursed at the Sun sounds like punk made under the influence of Bruce Springsteen’s 1980s musical output. There’s honesty and passion here for certain, but radio hooks aren’t really missing either.