Anonymous asked: What do you think of the new(est) Girls album? How does it stack up against their older stuff?
The short answer? Father, Son, Holy Ghost is an excellent follow-up for Girls, as good as, if not better than Album.
The long and extremely self-Indulgent answer? My love for Album took several months to get off the ground. I first heard it at a friend’s house and my only comments were that this dude sounded too much like Elvis Costello (whom I disliked as the result of a particularly annoying concert in 2006). I left it alone for a month or so before I got over myself. It was the spring of 2010 and I was living in sunny Southern California, riding my bike by the beach like it was my job. Songs like “Laura” and “Summertime” quickly became favorites. I soon fell in love with “Hellhole Ratrace”. Instead of just Costello I heard Buddy Holly, Elvis, and Phil Spector. Girls sounded like everything I had ever heard and liked, and yet I had never heard anything like them.
Needless to say, I hungered for new material from the band. I can’t say that was sated with the EP Broken Dreams Club, which sounded cheesy, and maybe even lame at the time. By the release of F, S, HG I was nervous. Girls has a very specific sound that’s so influenced by pop it can seem superficial. I wasn’t sure they would be able to sustain it and carry the same depth and weight on a second album.
Then “Vomit” was released, which was so different I didn’t know what to do with. “Honey Bunny” followed suit and I thought my fears were justified. When I finally got my hands on Father, Son, Holy Ghost I was sure I wasn’t going to like it. It was going to be like Interpol, The Arcade Fire and all the other bands who’s later albums could never hold a candle to their first.
I wanted to say that Girls got too much hype for their own good. I wanted to complain that the lyrics are too simple, too shallow, not smart enough. This always happens with me and Girls. I write them off, then curiosity gets the better of me and I actually listen to the whole album. Usually (thank god), I get over my ego/bullshit and allow myself to dance around and sing along to lyrics like “just a look was all it took, suddenly I’m on the hook. It’s ma-a-a-gic!” When I ditch my pretentious inner teen at the door and embrace simplicity, I am able to see the depth and weight I pretended wasn’t there in the first place.
It took less time for me to become completely obsessed with Father, Son, Holy Ghost. It was only a matter of weeks before I was getting gooseflesh over “My Ma” and “Die”. It’s an amazing album for a number of reason, not the least of which are the back-up singers and the numerable guitar solos. It’s almost as if they’ve taken all the most soulfull aspects from all the best genres and rolled them into one. I can’t wait to see what they bring in on the next one.
I had the pleasure of seeing Girls this past week and it was the best. I’ve been a little sad that show’s that good can’t go on forever.