Friday, September 16, 2016
The Pine Box Boys : "the Feast of Three Arms"
If you like Voltaire and Tenacious D, then you might have a higher tolerance for some of these shenanigans than I. Production wise this album is raw , but not in a punk way. I would expect a little more reverb, as singing about your mom killing her self needs a darker back drop. There is still to much of a skip in the step of "Comfy In My Coffin". Some of the glee that should be toned down here is in the bright voice of their lead singer. Some of the guitar tones work well, but if this was sung in a more ghostly baritone then it much be a much different story. It's not until "That Boy is Trouble" that we get the shadows coming in to create a more sinister atmosphere. "Parmalene" is like many of the other songs in that it is way too happy to sell the lyrical content.
Some of the spoken word interludes seem like they would just take up space on the ole iPod. Sure they are telling a story, but I think the music should do the talking here. So for the sake of this review I am just going to ignore these sections. The blue grass swing of "I Killed the Band", might not make them horror billy , but it is well played. There is more hell-fire breathed into the up tempo "Mighty Mighty Preacher". This narrative is not as bleakly told as Murder By Death's "Who Will Survive and What Will Be Left of Them?" The murder ballad "the Judge" better than most of the songs. "Rise" finds them returning to a lighter tone that reminds me of the Greatful Dead. I can see neo-hippies smoking pot to this one. There is more of a folk feel to "Dog Named Death". It's a song that is good for what it is, I think how they have branded themselves is deceptive as they would go over much better with the folky flannel shirt crowd that latched onto Mumford and Sons, as well as fans of the jam scene. Aside from the lyrics rarely is anything dark about the music. At this point in the album I think there are certain Dave Matthews albums that have a darker tone than these guys.
After a little spoken word section "Meet My Wife" kicks in. It finds them trying to harmonize up in their falsettos for better or worse. "Blameless" is more of a country ballad.
Maybe their first four albums are a lot darker, some how I doubt it. "Rushee -Roo -Let" has a more rock feel to it. I can hear this going over well with the Widespread Panic crowd.There is some almost proggy drumming to this song. They are more straight up blue grass on the quick paced square dance of "the River" .