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Thursday, July 13, 2006
  Black Fiction: Ghost Ride
about a month ago we got a few promos in the mail and one of them was this band with fantastic cover art and Animal Collective and old Beck comparisons. we popped it in, drowned it out by making food while it was playing, and never really spun it again.

i hate these kinds of mistakes.

in one day (today), two of my daily reads - Skatterbrain and GvB - both posted on the band raving about them. i sighed, mumbled the long version of wtf, and brought them up in my itunes.

yeahhhhhhh... they're goooood... i admit it.......

Black Fiction is a band from my Favorite Place On Earth, San Francisco. this gets them my props right away. but what earns them my liking (with a more diligent, attentive listen) is their creativity. yeah, creativity. their comparisons are right-on, but not necessarily because of any immediate auditory relevancies. it is more that they can't quite be defined, or matched, or pegged; they're quite above the petty games of genres and conventionality. recipe for a blogger favorite? i think so.

start off with Great Mystery. with the repetitive noise tracks, synths, and their signature highlighted and complicated percussion - you have a start that doesn't grab you, but tricks you. i think that's why we were originally able to go about our business and miss it - miss the simple tweaking and the uncommon instruments (glockenspiel! these guys are killer) that make all the difference.
go get this track from Matt at Skatterbrain, where i linked you already.

Magic Hands? uh, yeah, i friggin love this song. frequently i skip the lyrics when i'm listening to unusual indie genres, because they tend not to be prominent (or they're just plain nonsensical/irrelevant). but these lyrics make the song. sung by anyone else, they'd be thrown accusations of pansy shit, and my eyes would roll and i'd pass it by. but the style of execution (god i love being technical) is so damn cool that i'd like to geek out and to put the words in my myspace profile. i won't though. maybe.
by far, the best part is the first transition in tempo and added perc at his declaration, "all you have to do, is dance with me."
::::yes, please, listen: Black Fiction - Magic Hands

no, i won't go through every track with you (much less upload them all) but the next one, title-track Ghost Ride, is what propels your further interest. three strikes? no, just three easy steps from curiosity, to interest, to acceptance. the acoustic guitar and glockenspiel (yesss), little tingles of Gonzalez-like Latino plucking, and blended "la la las" accompany an echoey vocal track and lasts for four minutes without losing my good opinion. watch out at three minutes for harmonica and a transforming beautiful melody that really draws you in completely. now you're hooked. sorry.
::::you want to get hooked too, trust me: Black Fiction - Ghost Ride

lastly on my list is You Can Find Me, which is a gem past the point of no return with these guys. at two minutes and thirty-eight seconds, i am consistently impressed with their instrumental versatility and their ability to transform otherwise simple melodies and concepts into complex and innovative pieces. in this song, a gentle and unhalting acoustic bumbles along somewhat in the vein of Iron & Wine, but is backed by a little lawn-mower action and great fuzz that clouds you over. it's a nice one, i'm telling you.
::::free to grab: Black Fiction - You Can Find Me

the track that's causing all the hubbub elsewhere is the infectious I Spread the Disease, and it's a great one. but i won't steal their thunder. head over to either link (above) to grab it, if you haven't already.

the album drops on Howells Transmitter in just over a week (July 25th). buy.
also, head over to their myspace and download two tracks that won't be on their upcoming album.
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