It’s hard to remember why I first liked band of Skulls. The reason is product. They make product, though their music used to not seem like it.
I remember pumping Baby Darling Doll Face Honey loud and proud, driving around on cloudy late-fall days or whatever, and trumpeting the band’s histrionics to all my closest musically-inclined friends. I never called them my favorite band, let alone the best band ever, but something about the parts in churning seemed to contribute likely to a buoyant whole, and the whole thing played as thrashing, cathartic blues rock, unpredictable around every turn, but still writhing and genuine enough to make conventional structures sound in order.
Sweet Sour came out in 2012, and I was glad, ‘cause it was a little weird.
Now that Himalayan is out, I realize that that galvanizing weirdness on Sweet Sour was in all likelihood more just the primordial materialization of blues-rock gift than any actual inspiration. In other words, it certainly seems more a priori than a posteriori. Because it’s the same result — I get the CD at the library, love it, but rip it, they never come to my little sh**hole town, so I have no other way of supporting them.
So what I get in Himalayan is, ironically, just what I deserve. A treading of vanilla water, that same water, stained with my own soiled undies. The fact that for a while I had it on honorable mention for best albums of the year shows that I should probably stop doing those lists in the first place… anyway, all’s well that ends well.