May 20, 2007

PINK REASON "Cleaning The Mirror" LP

Picking at the scabs of the dark and squishy recesses of one's mind and turning it into music is not an occupation many should take up (or take lightly). Many try and it may not be that they fail per se but most of the time I am left unconvinced. Sure, anyone can take a stab at playing the bedroom recording introverted genius role and fancying themselves at the next Nick Drake or David Pierce of Flying Saucer Attack but the whole persona get way deflated when ya find out Mr. Depression is a suburban kid who can only get two chubby goth girls in the lunchroom to listen to him as he talks about cutting himself & all the drugs he's gonna do some day being oblivious that they are only half-hearted paying attention and either way it still doesn't get him laid.
With a knowledge of psychopharmacology that could make shrinks and chemists show more than a little concern and some life adventure's that might even make Lord Byron blush a bit, Pink Reason's main brain Kevin DeBroux spent the last couple of years crafting something that finds a balance between stark black & burned land, bruised & battered psyche and blinding bright white light leading Casey Buhr of
Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones when asked about "Cleaning The Mirror" in a phone conversation we were having late one night (cuz it's ALWAYS late when Casey calls) to say something to the effect "sometimes things of beauty cannot be put in words."
"Goodbye" opens the album with the feeling of a dark hours summer rain. Not one of those cool refreshing ones though. Humidity brought on by elephantine acoustic strum, a cricket the size of a truck electric guitar wail and a more than simple shoebox drum beat that only band's like Royal Trux ever seem to pull off convincingly. Add vocals sounding like they were pulled from some forgotten tape Martin Hannett produced during Factory Records infancy and one has some of the most uncomfortable feelings of calm laid to tape . It's followed by "Motherfucker" where the instrumentation is stripped down even farther while the vocals get a bit of doubling up making one of the creepiest feeling "love songs" I've heard in quite a while even more creepier.
The ominous feeling of the record never breaks yet a good part of the time the aforementioned humid claustrophobia shares it's space with an icy melancholy such as the carousel organ drowning in a backyard pond at a Black Mass sound that fills the air on "Thrush" as well as the lonely banjo sound and delicately strangled sax of the record's closer "Up The Sleeve".
I've been told before that every story has Kevin has to tell does have elements of truth and occurrences of the real things that have happened to him but he allows himself to blow it all out of proportion. When I reply "Yeah, but they are such great stories" no one ever disagrees. The same goes for "Cleaning the Mirror."
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