The Malarkies, 10,000 Back Doors
Source: press release for The Malarkies’ new album, 10,000 Back Doors.)
Response, 1: What the fuck?
Response, 2: It’s beautiful packaging, really.
Overview: I begin here with no idea who The Malarkies are.
Background: They are a duo; two members from the band k. They used to be a three-piece, but their bassist left. Hence, they are now a duo.
Malarkey: (def.) Exaggerated or foolish talk, usually intended to deceive; ‘snookered by a lot of malarkey.’
Malarkies: (assumption) A set or number of such deceptive talk(s).
Name Thoughts: That’s a strange name.
Sounds Like: Red House Painters with more depth, range, improvisation/experimentation
Doesn’t Sound Like: Sepultura, Orbital
Lyrical/Musical Themes: Memorable (hopeful, distinct) drum lines, vocals; inventive/effective avant-guitar strumming (esp. on ‘Night Dogs’); frequent mention of ‘dogs’ (probably ref. to canines, not aching feet: i.e., ‘My dogs are barking.’)
Closest Genre: alt-Country, unfortunately
Closest Genre, revised: 10,000 Back Doors is like an alt-Country album, but alt-Country is something I pretty much hate, so this definitely can’t be alt-Country. I’ll kinda-settle on ‘Folk.’ I don’t know what ‘alt-Country’ connotes. ‘Folk’ somehow connotes more class, more substance. ‘Country,’ on the other hand, connotes more substance abuse.
Closest Genre, redefined: They’re really doing their own thing here. And it’s a very good thing they’re doing. Will hold back from calling this genre ‘Malarkey.’
Review: Rootsy in a totally un-rootsy way, this album breathes some new sort of meaning. It’s an authentic, straightforward album in spirit, but it arrives there in a very un-straightforward way. The songs are tricky and utterly enjoyable, the songwriting superb. An altogether welcome surprise from an upcoming but already accomplished band.