"Music is the new pornography!"
The above quote is from Jimmy Swaggart, one of the most deplorable hypocrites ever to pick up a microphone. After exposing a fellow minister's adulterous affair and Jim Bakker's various dalliances (referring to Bakker as "a cancer on the body of Christ"), he was busted with a prostitute, which led to one of the funniest TV cries of all time. Three years later, he was busted with another hooker ("God told me it's falt-out none of your business"), and his fellowship's revenues fell by 85% while he continued giving himself a $350,000 annual salary. I didn't know Jesus was doing it for the Benjamins, dude!
I hate the Swaggarts of the world, who want to tell each and every one of us how to live and condemn as sins things they personally find immoral, but can't seem to keep their hands out of the methed-out-gay-sex cookie jar. Now, don't get me wrong - there's nothing wrong with people who enjoy controlled-substance-enhanced sodomy. To each their own, blah blah blah. But when you get on that soap box and scream "SIN SIN SIN SIN SIN!" at people for things you yourself do all while bilking them out of their money with threats of fiery torment, you're a despicable human being. ATTENTION CHRISTIAN LEADERS OF THE WORLD - LET'S FEED AND CLOTHE EVERY PERSON ON THE PLANET WHO WANTS FOR BOTH WHILE WORKING TO END WAR, THEN WE'LL TALK ABOUT GAY SEX AND SONG LYRICS AND ABORTION.
Sorry about that, boys and girls. I came across that quote while looking for info on the latest from the New Pornographers, and it angried up my blood something fierce. Which is odd, considered how relaxed their new LP is. (I am King of the Segues.) It drops in a couple weeks, and I'm not sure how the public is going to react. I for one was taken aback by how mellow it is compared to the rest of their catalogue. Like most NP fans, I was madly in love with their chirpy, uptempo power pop, and wasn't sure how to take the advance single "My Rights Versus Yours," which reminded me of nothing so much as the Shins and yindie movie soundtracks.
Well, I've had Challengers for a few weeks now, and it's definitely a grower. Dan Bejar (still in the throes of his Lou Reed/Frank Black obsession) continues to make me wonder why he's wasting his time in Destroyer, and AC Newman offers up only two uptempo vamps, the catchy "Mutiny, I Promise You" and "All the Things That Go to Make Heaven and Earth." Other than that, the rest of the album is given over to numbers like the stately title track, the shuffling "Go Places" (both featuring gorgeous lead vocals from Neko Case), the new wave vocal pop of "All the Old Showstoppers," and the vocal trade-offs of "Adventures in Solitude." Expect to hear the first third of the astounding "Unguided" sometime on Scrubs, backwards tapeloops and all.
While it's not the immediate classic its precessor was, Challengers is a highly enjoyable record that, once it sinks in, has a high replay factor. 2007 is shaping up to be a pretty killer year for good music, and this record is one more brick in that argument.
Mutiny, I Promise You: http://www.mediafire.com/?1nddgdzvhjz
Myriad Harbour: http://www.mediafire.com/?7poyelx91e1