By Robert Maloy-Feadbaque
I saw a picture in a fashion magazine once. It was of a guy wearing a white sport coat and what appeared to be a stripped tank top underneath, with a kind of 70s color scheme, Royal Blue and yellow (I capitalize ‘Royal + anything’ because I mean, it’s fucking royalty). He had a full hippie ’death to America’ sort of beard and his longish hair was up in a bun.
In his mouth was a rose. He wasn’t biting on the stem like he was dancing the Tango; there was no stem, just the flowery parts in his mouth. I thought to myself, “This is a beautiful shot. I need to know who this is and what his deal is.” Well, this man’s name was Edward Sharpe of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes fame.
People think I’m someone who’s ‘into music.’ And, that designation comes with baggage. There is an assumption that people who are ‘into music’ know all the new bands before anyone else. I am certain that there are music geeks out there that do…I am not one of them. So, you might imagine the displeasure I experienced as I painfully listened to ‘Man on Fire’ by Fast Eddie Sharpe and the Magnetic Fuckbags. Which, by the way, is a much better name.
Thankfully, not every new music experience is that much of a bamboozlement. If you add an ‘e’ it’s bamboozlemente, cuando se agrega ‘mente’ you form adverbs. So, Edward Sharpe bamboozley sang on that shit album. Nah, doesn’t have a pretty ring to it. Anyway, The Jacket’s new EP ‘Thousand Lies’ is exactly what you’d want from a new music experience. Surprisingly, the first track ‘Hurricane’ is mostly an instrumental. I say ‘surprisingly’ because I really like Harlowe’s voice and now I’m regretting the use of the word ‘surprisingly.’ It’s very ‘Kid A-Idioteque-Radiohead-ish’ in a good way. It’s a perfect entrance into the second song ‘Between You and Me.’
‘Between You and Me’ is a song to fuck to. The third track is an instrumental, but this one is more avant-garde. And, yes, I know it’s lame to say something is avant-garde and I don’t care. He’s attached a chill spot in the end, it’s like a ‘Riders on the Storm’ homage. Except in the Door’s song, it’s at the beginning like it matters? It doesn’t.
Finally, the title track ‘Thousand Lies’ does NOT disappoint. It’s by far the poppiest of the bunch. ‘The bunch’ is the middle-aged housewife way of saying EP. Thousand Lies is heavily vocoded (Which spellcheck tells me isn’t a word, but spellcheck also doesn’t listen to electronic music, so fuck spell check) but it’s tastefully vocoded. It’s easy to use a vocoder and make your music sound like two hearing impaired robots arguing about the check after a meal. So, it’s not as simple as just clicking the vocoding button and voilà you have a song. In the end, using ‘in the end’ is a cheap way of concluding your article.