From a Window Way Above
Two Sheds Records
Guest review by Doug Kabourek
from beginning to end, the album initially reminded me of Superchunk
with vocals done by either member of They Might Be Giants, but that
description doesn't cover the whole record because nearly every
single song has a different production style with just Matt Lisle's
engaging vocals for continuity. One song is glossy, the next is
gritty -- and always for the betterment of the tune. This is how
the truly great albums stand out. It's the difference between Bee
Thousand and Do The Collapse. Kudos to drummer Jason
Eshelmans wonderful production.
opens the record with its jangling shuffle and sets the scene: "At
a movie once / I walked up to the screen and was too close to tell
whats going on / So I turned around and saw the lights coming
down from a window way above." From here on, its
just great pop and timeless, clever lyrics. "These Aren't Mistakes"
is Lennonesque, with its "All You Need is Love" vocal
structure and backwards looped rhythm. "These aren't the
rules that we break / These are the rules that break us"
"Paint the Night"
sounds like a radically stripped down Mercury Rev, while "La
Fuerza del Destino" is one of the few guitar-based instrumentals
that holds my interest without using a major melody. My favorite
song, "Necessities," is a beautiful, mid-tempo rocker
that packs the same kind of punch found in the instrumental sections
of Built to Spills "Some" off There's Nothing
Wrong with Love -- wonderful.
Fairburn Royals are one
of the best acts out of Athens, Georgia, these days, and this record
is one of my favorites of 2002. Their name will be heard more and
more in the coming years -- you can't keep this kind of record a
secret for long.
Posted Jan. 12, 2003.
Copyright © 2003 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.
Royals are one of the best acts out of Athens, Georgia, these
days, and this record is one of my favorites of 2002."
I like this one for a whole different set of reasons than
Doug. These guys can be insightful and funny at the same time.
On "Japan," Lisle says he wants to move to the Pacific-rim
country "because there's bonus tracks on all the records
there." "Be My Punk Rock Friend" is the
anthem for anyone who felt like the out-of-place idiot at
a Fugazi show. Inspirational verse: "Can we not be
friends because I take my shower? / Can we not be friends
because I have a job? / Can we not be friends because I listen
to Radiohead?" All the while, the music is warm and
poppy and friendly as a puppy tripping over its own paws,
playing in the grass.