Monday, April 21, 2014

Big Wreck - Ghosts - I Digress

Since I've had the opportunity to hear these tracks in the making, it gives me pleasure to be able to share my written impressions with y'all (with Big Wreck's blessings - of course). I can't wait 'til we can ALL share our thoughts on this and all the others. I'll have MUCH more coming.... never been this excited!

Well, this was leaked on TSN's NHL this past weekend so I've been given the go to post up some description.

I Digress

It's not often you hear the phrase "I digress" in rock music. But that's why we dig Ian's writing so much. As he has many times before, maybe this time better than ever, he takes that Zep shadow and light approach to high conclusion. The song kicks off with a modern rock riff pinched like "Rest of the World" only tighter. Dueling with the crunch is a stabby pattern that made me think of Nuno Bettencourt from Extreme. Everything is like chiseled points of sound calling and responding as Ian sings of an internal battle that has been raging for a long time. We've got dueling guitars doing call and response with the bass while the drumming rolls over the top repeatedly.

Is it imagination or jealousy?
My intuition failing me?
I'm gonna throw up from so much pride!

As he elongates his "priiiide" he lays those long deep bent sweeping Pagian notes… lots of tension is building… As if all this thinking is driving him mad!

Now the song transitions into "classic" rock mode for a bar with some Who-ish chords and a standard 4-4 beat (is that cowbell?) but just for a taste to set up the bouncy Brit-Pop chorus..

He's never gonna know what we've been through
He'll never open you
As I digress, I need tenderness
As I digress

And I MEAN bounce! Davey's bass playing propels this section as Ian's Beach Boy best croons over the top! It sooo catchy and warm you just want it to stay… it feels like LOVE!

But don't get comfortable… you're about to DIGRESS! 

Don't let 'em iiinnnnn!

Now we've got the mania firing in all directions… this episode more frantic than the last…. 
Another walk through that dumb classic rock riffage as Ian lays it out…

Another idiot smiles and comments on your eyes
Whoever he is, he don't know yoouuuuu

And we're in love again… all chiming guitars and "oooohh-ooooo"s. It's such a schizophrenic song.

Back into the mayhem which has been turned up to a blistering pace. Davey is VERY Entwistle here Chuck Keeping doing fierce crescendos while POUNDING the beat! Out of this whirlwind stomps that Who inspired power chord that reminds me of  Ram Jam's "Old Black Betty". This section thumps up to the cliff and launches into this beautiful blue ocean sized vocal "YOUUUU!"

In midair it's caught by the pop section and lands softly in love… but wait… does mania win? In Big Wreck's world evidently it does. Love is the digression. 

As the hard beat lays the foundation, the cry of "DON"T LET EM IN!" wails out! Then they start the slow burn. Deliberate riffing plays under a long tortured solo that slithers up out of the mix. It undulates around and in between the riffing. Other guitars come up to support while still more make counterpoint. The layers build as the solo become more furious. The whole thing builds like a speed metal sprint while Ian plays triplets higher and higher, adding voice after voice. It seems like there must be 10 guitars cascading! Definitely born out of the extended Come Again road version with guitars locking in! THIS is a guitar wanking at it's BEST! 

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