Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Perpetually Confused, "The View from James"

I haven't reviewed an album yet, but will make an exception for the latest from Perpetually Confused, because the title is based on another James who is unusually tall. What do things look like from his perspective? Most people would try to answer such a question using stilts, but music turns out to be a worthwhile substitute in this case.

A breakdown of my impressions track by track:

The View from James

1. Harem of One
-This is the song that introduced me to the band. Still love the percussive elements and the strong rhythmic feel of the lyrics. In an age of commercialized romance, it's nice to hear a song that brings real passion and commitment to life, putting the love industry into stark relief.
2. Very Baby Very
-Apparently, "cry" and "very" are one letter different when texted from certain phones. An interesting experiment in texted songwriting. The musical influence borders on theft, but at least this band knows who to steal from.
3. Rocks for Brains
-I think it's safe to say we've all had days like this. At the same time the words describe what it feels like, the music reminds you how it really feels.
4. Sex Before Cereal
-The album's second-best instrumental track.
5. The Hegemony of Time
-Form meets content in this multi-rhythmic song about how we are all trapped in the idea of time. Lyrically, no other song on the album rivals this one...
6. If by Rival You Mean Plagiarize
-except, of course, for this illegal medley of classic tunes: unusual in that the verses are stolen from Bob Dylan and the choruses from Leonard Cohen, but the melody from the Beatles.
7. Ayaz
-You can almost feel the Huma fly by while listening to this song.
8. Crazy Works for Me
-A song about the boss of a girl named Crazy. Not the album's best effort, but sort of hypnotically appealing, in a makes-you-feel-like-the-world's-biggest-dork sort of way.
9. Sex After Cereal
-The album's best instrumental track.
10. Appendix in C
-A meandering seven minute song that explains all the obscure references in the rest of the tracks. (On the vinyl version, "Appendix" takes up its own side of the album.)


  1. I've had an Alanis Morissette song stuck in my head for the last half hour or so...which is not the worst thing to have stuck in one's head (an ice pick, for example, is less pleasant)...but I still think it's sad that having just reviewed a great album, my mind has fixated on something decidedly less great.

    Ah, well. Life is strange like that--and then you get murdered in exile in Mexico.

  2. Are you sure it's about another unusually tall James? Because the song descriptions certainly sound as if they were stolen from a biopsy of your brain.

  3. On the iTunes download version, "Appendix" is removed...


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