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Album Cover Mumble and Peg - This Ungodly Hour (Vaccination Records)

Every once in a while, and I do mean a while, I get to listen to something that's just so good that even after multiple listenings, I can't stand to have anyone in the room talk while the CD is playing. This is one of those rare recordings; I don't even know how to think or barely breathe when I listen to this, it's just so spine-grabbing/teeth-clenching/head-pounding tense and tight and painful and controlled. It's like the music gets into my head and all I can do is sit and listen and feel myself filling to absolute possession. This is what Nick Cave wishes he could do, backed by a band that he has never had.

Both lyrically and instrumentally, this is sound. David Gleason's guitar work on 'Birthday' is easily as good as anything out there on the "major" labels, while Erik Carter's guitar on the rest of the tracks is so dark and ominous his anger or sadness, depending on the song, is almost palpable. The subjects of the songs range from being cared for while going through recovery to remembering an old girlfriend's birthday, which in writing seem like decent enough lyrics but, when delivered by Carter, turn into something just plain scary.

There's just no way that something like this could come from any more than one in a million bands. If there were more people releasing or even thinking this kind of music, we (the listening public) would be reduced to just stacks and stacks of writhing, quivering piles of sadness and unrequited want. The streets would be absolutely littered with bodies. Yet, just when you think you can't take it anymore, the next song on the CD manages to either lift your mood just enough to keep you listening, or drag you in so deep you can't stand to shut the music off.

by Holly Day