Grave Return – Green Skies
To some, punk-rock never really got its proper due. Yes, sure, many aspects related to it have infiltrated popular culture, or have been bastardized for commercial success. The garage-rock inspired sound that made musicians of the 1970s kids possessing a good deal of frustration and a capacity to learn three-chord songs, faded quickly from the spotlight.
It was just as well. It meant that undisturbed by the public’s hunger for Top 40 hits, the style was developed by industrious communities of musicians across the world. The punk-rock sound that fans of The Damned, The Sex Pistols, or The Jam may have recognized has been updated by modern production techniques, superior playing and more advanced songwriting devices.
One such band is Grave Return. Their sound strikes a delicate balance between aggression and pop mastery. Green Skies is the perfect example of this. It may be inspired by the classic sound of 1977 London rock, but it, clearly, is the result of decades of punk evolution.
The Chairman Dances – I pulled the sheet back over my head
Modern music will always have a place for intellectuals absorbed by the misery of the world. Other than the less profitable and exciting realms of contemporary literature, there is no other field as accepting of people of this ilk.
Music, for example, offered refuge to Leonard Cohen while he was busy figuring out life. A former published author, Cohen went from one great album to another and from one personal defeat to another, all while being cheered on by numerous adoring fans. The basic belief seems to be that if a would-be great artist is to suffer, they might as well chronicle their journey.
The Chairman Dances’ I pulled the sheet back over my head is one such description of trying times. The song features densely layered indie-rock instrumentation and honest, nearly whispered lyrics that describe with tenderness and honesty the process of attempting to overcome depression and mental anguish. Most importantly, the song as a whole captures what it feels like to be unable to move out of bed even to fix a cup of coffee. It’s not the most glamorous topic, and that is precisely why we’re fortunate that The Chairman Dances chose to write about it.