The Butlers did it…again; Smash Palace Do It Again (a CD review)
The past week has been spent in route to one place or another listening to Smash Palace’s new CD, Do It Again, released on Zip records yesterday. I’ve been meaning to write this review for the past few days now now but life and family have conspired to get in the way.
The Butler brothers, Steven and Brian, have put together another stellar collection of pop-rock magic. “Living It Lonely” starts out the disc, a really catchy number and one worthy of the title “single” and the accompanying youtube video. The title cut, “Do It Again”, reminisces about better days, periods when the music was vital “before the music was all for free”, when the industry wasn’t on life support like today. The reference to the CBGB days hit me particularly hard.
After seeing The Beatles on Ed Sullivan, I was relentless about wanting a guitar and bugging my mom to buy me one. The first verse of “Do It Again” was about that experience. Once we had that done, we plotted out the rest of the song: why not write it about those big musical moments in our life. The next verse was about The Stones and Mick in ’69 and how he really became the first big arena size rock star. At least to me he was. The top hat, the strutting and jumping around on the stage and how rock n roll had changed. It wasn’t about pop music so much anymore. It was changing with the Vietnam War and politics. It was a scary time worrying about getting drafted and sent to some war in a far off land. – from AntiMusic.com
The Butlers pay tribute to various other musical periods and styles on this record. “Tell Her Now” sounds almost as if it would be a great song for Ray Davies to sing, and Can’t Make It Without Her has a bit of a Bob Seger / Dave Edmunds vibe to it. “Sympathy Runs Deep” has a Donovan-esque chorus and 21st Century Boy was an immediate hit with me. “Dreamer” may be my favorite cut of all, with an opening guitar riff that’ll suck you right in, engaging harmonies, and a vibe that takes you back to when everything was right with the world.
In a year when we’ve already had good releases a-plenty, this is one of the better ones. Go out and buy it.
While you’re looking for your credit card, check out the video of “Living It Lonely” below.