One person bands usually suffer because of their lack of discussion – this is not the case witrh Spencer Krug’s Sunset Rubdown. A key member of Wolf Parade, this iteration of Spencer’s music really looks back to seventies-era David Bowie for inspiration. The experimental nature of tracks like “Hope You Don’t Stoop To Dirty Words II” show someone that really does not care for the conventions of time signatures or euphonic sounds, but really wants to forge eir own way. The disturbing feel of the track seems to follow much in the “Smells Like Children”-era vein of Marilyn Manson.
It is not that Sunset Rubdown is doing shock-rock, but the creation of a certain air, an atmosphere that makes a listener actually get a little frightening. Even more striking is the tendrils of electricity that open up “Cecil’s Bells”, in a track that mixes the depressing ambient music present through a large deal of the disc with the style of electronic dance that has made such a big splash lately (in terms of bands like The Postal Service). The move through “I Know The Weight of your Throat”, from a largely-acoustic composition to an clapping slice of Americana shows both the influence of bands like Vetiver on Spencer and really solidifies any thought that Spencer is the farthest thing from a one-trick pony. “Sol’s Song”, an instrumental feels not as much connected to the rest of “Snake’s Got A Leg” as it is connected to a pretentious French film (like “Amelie”); the track, while continuing the same quality that is present throughout the disc, follows in no way the rest of the fare on the CD.
While most distortion is the result of poor recording or someone behind the knobs that doesn’t know what ey is doing, the distortion present on the penultimate track “Snake’s Got A Leg II” (specifically, the distortion of the strings). The distortion normalizes what would normally be an oddity on the track, and really allows Spencer to make the track a rock/dance hybrid that in many ways is the best on the disc. “Snake’s Got A Leg” is a meandering disc, as much a wanderer as the entitled creature, and at no time does it dawn upon a listener that what they are hearing as anything but original. This is a theme album without any specific theme, a movie with strong character development but no plot – a perfectly delightful way to spend thirty-five minutes.
Top Tracks: The Dust You Kick Up is Too Fine, Snake’s Got A Leg II
Sunset Rubdown Snake’s Got A Leg CD Review