Discussion

A Couple of Sleepers

I've found a couple of new releases in the last couple of weeks, both from groups that supposedly had broken up, that were missed by the ND Release list and by similar lists at other sites. They are Drag the River's appropriately named "Bad At Breaking Up" and Clem Snide's "Hungry Bird." I've downloaded both but I don't know the backstory about either of them -- does anybody know anything about these releases? Am I misfiring here -- are these re-issues? My quick take is that both CDs will be quite familiar and comfortable for those (such as myself) who ate up these groups' previous albums. The Drag the River CD is notable for its overall length and for the individual brevity of its songs -- it has 20 tracks, most of which are three minutes or less. After only one listen, I can report that it it sounds like -- and tells the same stories or heartbreak, fear and empty bottles -- as the group's previous releases. While it doesn't seem to cover much new ground, that's just fine from where I sit, particularly after assuming they were gone for good. The Clem Snide album has a few more sonically edgy tracks than old favorite CDs like "The Ghost of Fashion" and "Your Favorite Music," but, at its core (as always), is Eef Barzelay's lovely, tenor that is (as always) somehow warm and reassuring even in the midst of often-melancholic lyrics. As a side note, I'm a fan of Barzelay's most recent solo CD, "Lose Big," but I had forgotten just how much texture he gains by being with the full band. In any case, has anybody else come across any sleepers out there recently that may have missed editorial notice?
Drag the River is back to playing shows - I think they have been for quite a few months now. I saw them at a show this past summer. I think they report now that they were taking a hiatus, but seem to be back going generally as normal.
Found this on the Vinyl Collective website... Drag the River have compiled 7" only tracks, B-sides, their tracks from their split LP with the Dents, and more to make up the 20 song collection CD, Bad at Breaking Up. This collection will help you to own nearly everything Drag the River have ever recorded (that is if you have their other studio albums). The appropriately titled album serves as a reminder that although Jon and Chad plan to release solo albums in 2009, Drag the River will never be done. Buy this release and celebrate one of the greatest Country bands on the planet. This collection includes their tracks from : Garage Rock 7", Can't Leave These Strays 7", Under the Influence 7", Way With Women 7", Beautiful and Damned 7", Drag the River/Dents split, and some others. http://stores.channeladvisor.com/vinylhome/Items/sh 108-2?&caSKU=sh 108-2&caTitle=DRAG THE RIVER "Bad at Breaking Up" CD w/ DTR guitar pick PRE-ORDER
I've ordered the Clem Snide and am awaiting it anxiously.
The Clem Snide's not a re-issue, check out the NPR article here