Red Sparowes: Like The Howling Glory Of The Darkest Winds, This Voice Was Thunderous And The Words Holy Tangling Their Way Around Our Hearts And Clutching Our Innocent Awe. [purchase]
There are many songs that fit this theme, and it would be easy to write about Springsteen, or CS&N, or Death Cab for Cutie, or Elvis Costello, etc. And I still might. But one of the fun things about writing for this blog (and, I hope, one of the reasons that people read it) is that I can, occasionally, discuss some pretty obscure music.
The Red Sparowes fit the bill. Made up of members of other bands that I have never heard of, they released three albums and a few split releases in the 2004-2010 period and are usually categorized as “post-rock.” I’ve written about what this genre is, sort of, before, and won’t repeat myself here. Basically, though, the genre encompasses music, like this, that is usually instrumental, usually pretty intense, with guitars and keyboards creating soundscapes and with prominent percussion. But not always.
I can’t remember how I found out about these guys, but I liked them immediately. Their music is somewhere in the intersection of rock, metal and prog, and without the annoying vocals that can often ruin lesser metal and prog songs. And unusually, they often feature the pedal steel guitar.
But even better than the music are their song titles. I mean, you have to love the title of the featured song. And it may not even be the best title on the album. It’s a close call, but I’m going to go with "And by Our Own Hand Did Every Last Bird Lie Silent in Their Puddles, the Air Barren of Song as the Clouds Drifted Away. For Killing Their Greatest Enemy, the Locusts Noisily Thanked Us and Turned Their Jaws Toward Our Crops, Swallowing Our Greed Whole." The whole song is 1:42, slightly longer than it takes to say the name. Some other Red Sparowes song titles: "Mechanical Sounds Cascaded Through the City Walls and Everyone Reveled in Their Ignorance," "We Left the Apes to Rot, But Find the Fang Still Grows Within,” and “Finally As That Blazing Sun Shone Down Upon Us Did We Know That True Enemy Was The Voice Of Blind Idolatry; And Only Then Did We Begin To Think For Ourselves.”
I’d suggest putting on headphones, cranking up the volume (to a safe level, of course) and enjoying the 10 plus minute journey of this tune.