And The Hits Just Keep On Comin'

And The Hits Just Keep On Comin'

A Music Journal Collective Effort

Monday, November 26, 2007

Kevin Drew
Spirit If...

Canadian Indie darling Kevin Drew, bandleader of Broken
Social Scene, offered the first taste of his solo fruits in ‘Spirit
If…’ in late September of 2007. For all of the chaos,
controversy and cacophony that ebbs and flows from the
very core of this ‘super-group’, and that which music critics
love to either salivate or whine over, I believe that despite
a few over-the-toppities, KD has something slickly original
to lend to the ears of his listeners here. The daunting, organic
opening track, Farewell to the Pressure Kids, starts as a
somber mellotron appetizer that breaks its belt into a
whimsical catastrophe of carousel-esque sounds, guitars,
reverb and percussion. It’s almost if KD, himself, is saying
farewell to the pressure of big band life, record executives
and the corporate music scene while delving into something

‘Well the pressure kids…they own ashphalt, they won’t roll the die..’.

Despite driveling on himself from time to time, with his
constant stream of consciousness lyrical flow, Drew focuses
well on the two things he loves to write about most: sex and
society. ‘Lucky Ones’ is probably one of the most well
constructed songs that I have heard in years. The simple
opening of a distant, ringing guitar blends perfectly with a
Justin Peroff straight-gunning drum track. In true Kevin
Drew bleeding heart-artist style, lyrical sonnetry, he spills
his guts about the tension of loving someone he is close to:
‘All of your words came down like your spies/Trickled
through the morphine and tried to make a crime/I don’t
expect to suggest that we’re through/You know I can live
without you if you do…’

Aside from a few shiners, though, this album is not a
standout achievement by any stretch. Kevin Drew’s
constant clinging to a teenage era is accented by his constant
musical hero-worship of J Mascis who personally lends
his signature guitar tone to the album single ‘Backed Out
On The…’ The song itself actually lacks originality and almost
sounds like something Mascis himself would have released
in 1991 as a Dinosaur Jr. b-side. Overall, though, ‘Spirit If…’
still begs you to spin it more and more as you let it play
longer in your system. In the end, the good still outweighs
the mediocre and this album sounds different sonically
than most contemporary musical acts of today.


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