Dark Night Of The Soul; Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse
Music Album; EMI Records
“D ark Night Of The Soul” is an album that is steeped in controversy. Ominous, starting from the name and the events that followed after recording was complete; the album holds true to its name and is moody with a sound that is grey through most of the album.
The album is a product that was shaped by “Danger Mouse” who displayed his music-mettle and skill with “The Grey Album”, a mash up of Jay-Z and the Beatles, “Sparklehorse”, an American alternative band lead by the late Mark Linkous, and filmmaker David Lynch. It was taken a notch higher by the flock of musicians who have loaned their talent and voices to the tracks.
Dangerhorse, who had already rubbed EMI the wrong way with “The Grey Album”, locked horns with the label again and there were serious doubts about the release of “Dark Night Of The Soul”. The album was one of the last works of Mark Linkous before he committed suicide earlier this year, and now that you think about it, the songs do give clues of an unseemly bent of mind.
The album has a heavy touch of Lennon from his “Imagine” days, and the further you move into every song the more you see strokes from the brushes of the lending musicians and the musicians they have been inspired by. “Revenge” which features “The Flaming Lips” is a song that is quiet and speaks of revenge, the bleak futility of the act. Like the calm after a storm they sing, “The more I try to hurt you / The more that it hurts me.” “Jaykub” with it's one second metronome features “Grandaddy” front-man Jason Lytle. It is simple, unpretentious and most of all genuine. Lytle also does vocals for “Everytime I'm With You”, the song is intoxicating and you find yourself releasing all the muscles that you have held wound up, a quality that most songs on the album possess.
“Insane Lullaby” could without a doubt be the best song on the album. The song features James Mercer of “The Shins” and is a clever song. The soft lullaby adulterated with distortion gives the song a bite that is missing on the other tracks. Another song that lies in the neighbourhood of best song is “Little Girl”. Danger Mouse brings in a Gnarls Barkley feel, and makes the song stand out from all the others with distinct percussion, intricate guitar-work and an increased tempo.
Also watch out for “Star Eyes” and “Man Who Played God” to add to your list of favourites. This album is not for the masses that moves to commercial drivel. An album that announces clarity and maturity, it does not disappoint the listener.
CATHERINE RHEA ROY