Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Horrible Department
Capital I & the Royal Waltzing We
Desperate Commodities [2012]

Like a vivid memory of an early century psychedelic Italian sideshow, The Horrible Department came at me full speed, accordions and horn section, "Check". Capital I… may have been one of the opening acts for an alternate realm Neutral Milk Hotel performance found within the troubled Victorian artwork of NMH's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea LP but they probably realistically just play some shows here and there in their native Western Philadelphia neighborhoods. This full length record is bound by impressive artwork, inserts, and presentation - an intelligent move for a band who, when taken out of context might sound like a group that played the haunted bar in The Shining. Capital I… tells a story from start to finish. I'm not sure what that story fully is, but repression and isolation come to mind; there are punk rock hints buried within the songs and those ethics very well may come into play. I felt like I was reading a good book in my study while a phonograph softy played European folk tracks. Simpler times. This might not be a record I'd blast every day of my life, but that's not because it isn't good, rather it's a record for a certain time, mood, and place. Now to figure out exactly when and what that time, mood, and place is.  

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