Dead Oceans Teams With Frog Eyes For New LP,
Shares Album Cut “A Flower in a Glove”
There are more than a few of us here at Dead Oceans who have been closely watching the career of Frog Eyes since their first album surfaced many moons ago. We have been admirers and collectors of all things Frog Eyes for years, so when the opportunity to release their new album was presented to us, we did not hesitate. We are beyond pleased to be working with one of the finest, most dynamic bands making music today. And on April 27th we will be releasing Frog Eyes crowning achievement.
Free download after the jump…
Three years in the making, Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph marks Frog Eyes’ thunderous, frantic, fiery return. This is a slow-brewed masterpiece that is unmistakably Frog Eyes, a new album that was very much worth the wait. On this point we feel unassailable: Frog Eyes keeps getting better and better.
This is an album with weight. It’s wrapped in a gauze of fuzz, but a fuzz that’s neither yesteryear nor painfully now. Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph is neither overly modern nor awkwardly vintage, and it contains a depth and bombast that’s not only absent in Frog Eyes’ previous work, it’s absent from most contemporary music.
Frog Eyes’ Carey Mercer is equally informed by Scott Walker and Roxy Music, Nuggets collections and the Everly Brothers. But in truth, Frog Eyes’ recordings sound like nothing else but Frog Eyes. In the past the band has lived in a no-man’s-land reserved for musical anomalies, making music championed by discerning critics and discerning artists (fans of Mercer’s songwriting have included at one time or another, John Darnielle, Spencer Krug, Dan Bejar, Jonathan Meiburg and Carl Newman, to name a few). With due respect to the above, the scope and vision of Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph is triumphant because it busts so thoroughly out of the ghetto of the clever.
It gets there, in part, because all of the basic tracks, including many of the vocals, were recorded live off the floor, and this approach has captured a rawness, a punk rock spirit too often smother by Pro Tools. Singer/songwriter Mercer’s instantly recognizable howl is ever-present, soaring above the frenetic beats of drummer Melanie Campbell. Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph is in the canon of “two-guitar” records: the majestic shredding between Mercer and Ryan Beattie recalls everything from Neil Young/Danny Whitten’s work on early Young recordings to Tom Verlaine and even, occasionally, Hendrix. The synths weave in and out of this buzzing wall of sound, and new Frog Eyes member Megan Boddy’s sweet backing vocals are a kind of foil for Mercer’s wail. Mercer’s lyrics are a continuing refinement of warnings and prophecies, threats and terrors, and what he calls “contrapuntal sharp blasts of hope.” As Carl Wilson of Pitchfork put it in his [glowing] review of their 2007 album Tears of the Valedictorian, “[Frontman Carey] Mercer stands in the lineage of rock frontman as half-carnival-barker, half-gnostic-preacher that Greil Marcus describes as the ‘crank prophet,’ from Screamin’ Jay Hawkins through Arthur Lee of Love, Captain Beefhart, David Thomas of Pere Ubu, Tom Waits, and the Pixies’ Frank Black.” Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph is Mercer – and Frog Eyes – at their most powerful and self-assured.
We are pleased to share the mammoth opener from Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph. “A Flower in a Glove” encapsulates everything we love about Frog Eyes in just over nine minutes – an epic beginning to a monstrous album.
Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph will be released on April 27th (April 26th in the UK) via Dead Oceans.
Paul’s Tomb: A Triumph Tracklisting:
A Flower in a Glove
The Sensitive Girls
Lear, in the Park
Styled by Dr. Roberts
Lear in Love