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  1. #1
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    Journey to the End of the Night

    The Mekons. I've been listening to this one a lot lately so thought it might be nice to post a few words about it since it is a favorite. When I wrote the description for my Twilight comp almost three years ago, I remember describing this as being one of those albums that doesn't streak to the top of your best of the year list, but stays in constant rotation throughout the year until you finally realize it is one of your favorites and would be sorely missed if somehow lost. And since then it has probably become even more of a sentimental favorite of mine, one of those rare albums I could listen to most of the day without feeling any overwhelming urge to play something else. Familiar and accessible, but full of spirit and discovery. Populated with real characters, sometimes shadowed in mystery or cloaked in darkness, but living and breathing as their adventures unfold. This is a much more hushed Mekons than in the past. More mature, yet still provocative. One of the main things about it that so endears it to me is the overall flow of both music and ideas. Sometimes the songs seem almost interconnected, though not linearly or literally. Maybe through a recurring melodic fragment or tone or mood. Even in the liner notes the lyrics for each song are tied together with sometimes lengthy narratives. Very nice album, and probably their most vocally rich one yet as well with Neko Case, Edith Frost and Kelly Hogan adding backing vocals behind Sally Timms, Jon Langford, Tom Greenlaugh and Rico Bell.




    Here's a short review by Jim Caligiuri of the Austin Chronicle.....

    New albums from the Mekons, which thankfully seem to appear on a more frequent basis these days, are always an adventure. With that as a given, Journey to the End of the Night, their 20th long player, still comes as a surprise. It's surely the band's most accessible work in years, filled with pensive ballads, atmospheric soliloquies, and moody reggae grooves. Though they never truly rage and rock, beneath it all stirs a dense, dark heart. The album's title is taken from a 1932 novel written by Louis-Ferdinand Céline, one of France's most important 20th-century writers, which is appropriate for a band known for its rabble-rouser ways; the tome was shocking and revolutionary for its time, and it's been credited with redefining the art of the novel thanks to its black humor, nihilism, and irreverent, explosive writing style. In that light, the enigmatic attitude and seductive ambience that constitute Journey to the End of the Night's most attractive elements and the hallucinatory, or perhaps more appropriately drunken, lyrics connect in a remarkable way. The effective commingling of vocals from Sally Timms, Tom Greenlaugh, Jon Langford, and Rico Bell, sturdy support from Steve Goulding, Suzie Honeyman, Sarah Corina, and Lu Edmonds, and heavenly guest appearances from Kelly Hogan, Neko Case, and Edith Frost, all amount to an unexpected yet potent collection of songs. The Mekons have done it again, long may they reign.

    http://www.austinchronicle.com/issue...recviews2.html

  2. #2
    all around good guy Jim Clark's Avatar
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    Have I heard the Mekons? After reading your nice review I'm drawing a complete blank. I'll rummage through the comp binders and see if I can pull a track or two out from somewhere. I know I didn't ask for the Twilight comp but surely there's something in there that maybe I didn't give full attention to. The mail was nice to me today and I'm getting a chance to hear somethings I wouldn't have tried on my own in a million years. Seems some of you guys are listening to a bit of better music as of late so now my hands are really going to be full wading through it all.

    Keep up the good work and I like the newest little avatar. Can't wait to see the next one!

    jc
    "Ahh, cartoons! America's only native art form. I don't count jazz 'cuz it sucks"- Bartholomew J. Simpson

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Clark
    Have I heard the Mekons?

    Keep up the good work and I like the newest little avatar. Can't wait to see the next one!

    jc
    I did put a Mekons song on my 80s comp from the Rock 'n' Roll album which came out in 1989 I believe, and also the aforementioned Twilight comp from the Journey album that dropped in 2000. This one that I just talked about has kind of a Massive Attack type vibe which is really nice. More reggae than country punk. They've always been pretty unique. Stone is a big fan of the mid 80s Fear and Whiskey album which was reissued a couple years ago to much indie hipster fanfare. Not sure if he's a bandwagoner or an original fan, but who cares. He knows good stuff when he hears it

    Stuck In The 80s: Volume 3
    Twilight

    Not sure if I have a copy of either of those anymore but you probably have the 80s comp. Quite a few people have the Twilight comp but I think I sent my copy to tentoze. I'm sure somebody has one lying around collecting dust that you could have

    That avatar is something I used as the cover on a trip hoppy comp from a long time ago called Above and Beyond (and yes it probably will have a short life as an avatar but it is a cool image nonetheless and you are cool too for recognizing it as such ).

  4. #4
    Toon Robber tentoze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey.
    Not sure if I have a copy of either of those anymore but you probably have the 80s comp. Quite a few people have the Twilight comp but I think I sent my copy to tentoze. I'm sure somebody has one lying around collecting dust that you could have
    I'll check for the Twilight comp when I get home; I dun remember. The only Mekons I have is The Curse of the Mekons, which I like a whole lot. I keep seeing just a large chunk of their catalog for $6-$8 used in Big B's every time I go in there, and always threaten to snag a coupla more, but haven't yet.
    ----Never Off Topic, Never Rude-----

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