New Bums, "Last Time I Saw Grace"
Friends Ben Chasny (Six Organs Of Admittance) and Donovan Quinn (Skygreen Leopards) are fans of each other's work, and so in 2014, they decided to work together out of their respective projects. Last Time I Saw Grace is the second long-player from their union. The latest from the two maintains the feel of the one-take sound of 2014's Voices in a Rented Room with the addition of a rich layering of instrumentation, affording a more lavish sound. All of the lyrical wit from the first album is present, and the emotional intensity of dual acoustic guitars in glorious interplay soars to new heights.
Chasney and Quinn are two incredibly talented musicians that know the strength of memorable melody. Quinn's lyrical prowess strengthens the power of the emotional exchange of these two highly proficient guitarists. The album wastes no time in showcasing their muscle, launching with "Billy, God Damn," striking first with slide guitar while Quinn lines up his lyrical attack: "Billy, it's a god damn shame / the strain on our bodies / the stains on our name." "Marlene Left California" is undoubtedly a song Dylan wishes he had written, a story of four people‚Äîincluding the author‚Äîtied together in disparate ways, all lost and floundering to find direction. Word to Al Stewart: get busy on a cover of "Onward to Devastation." There is plenty of dark gallows humor within, lightened by lyrical playfulness ("Cover Band") and jangle ("Obliteration Time," "Tune to Graffiti"). I would urge listeners that appreciate bluesy folk, outsider acoustic singer-songwriters a la Robyn Hitchcock, and dual guitarists to give this a listen.
Samples can be found here.