/dreamworks; 2003/



more info:

I cannot understand Eels's journey in the world of music business. They never seem to release the album expected. They started with a big major ‘music for the masses’ – and yet excellent – album (Beautiful Freak 1996) while most good pop rock bands start from nothing. After the worldwide success, ‘Electroshockblues’ was a cold shower for the masses and only the underground fans remained. The acoustic ‘Daisies of the Galaxy’ was all the more confusing but lighter. Last year or so, ‘Souljacker’ already showed signs of weakness in composition and inventiveness. ‘Shootenanny’ is awfully boring and repetitive, badly produced and commercially doomed to be underground. Sorry guys, I liked your music a lot but now I am off the wagon.

The effects on both the voice and the guitars are awful, spoiling the pleasure I am not even sure I would have had without them. Always the same chorus thing on the guitar, wherever it’s a ballad or a rock song, always the same unnatural filtered telephone voice, song after song. The whole thing is unbearable over and over. I suppose one should say that EELS has been influenced by Grandaddy and Nick Cave for this album (some keyboards here and there, some attempts at gloomy atmosphere, the fragile voice,…), but they mimick them so badly that it is not a compliment for either of them. All the songs are ridiculously sticking to a 3 minutes long format ,as if there were 13 possible radio hit singles on the album. Believe me there ain’t a single one?

So I come to the conclusion that I was not given a proper copy of the album, maybe what I got is an internet midi file version of an excellent album. Who knows? Who cares?

Write to us.

-Angus ‘Elaine’ Anderson

/sept 1st 2003/