Monday, September 23, 2013

Check Out This Album: Walking Papers

When I FINALLY dived into the digital music realm, I found myself discovering a lot of new stuff. I'll concede that, with physical record stores all but a thing of the past, and those that do exist not really catering to an old hessian like myself, it's nice to hear about a band like, say, Kadaver, and be able to just quickly download an album.

Of course, this damn digital "revolution," the the devaluation of music attached to it, is why there's a fraction of the record stores around from when I was a kid. That, however, is another rant.

Last week, I was surfing the web, and came across a interview with Duff McKagan, of Guns 'N Roses fame, taking about a new project called Walking Papers. A project sprung from McKagan's Seattle roots, featuring former Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin, Jeff Angell (guitars and vocals) and Benjamin Anderson (keys), both from The Missionary Position (a band I confess I've never heard of). Mike McCreedy from Pearl Jam also guests on a couple of tracks for lead guitar work. I was curious simply because I've been interested in McKagan, and his various projects, since reading his autobiography.

So, out of curiosity, I listened to the album a bit on Spotify Friday at work. I couldn't blast it, being in a work environment (far, far from it), but I was struck by the rhythmic choices, and the snippets of lyrics I caught. It was basically underscore to my day's activities, but I found my toe tapping quite often. So, Saturday morning I downloaded the deluxe edition of the album (with 3 live tracks), and listened to it most of the weekend. It's catchy, and rocking without being "in your face" guitars and drums. The tone shifts from a Seattle grunge feel, to a very Rolling Stones sort of vibe, to tracks I would've sworn were Tom Waits covers.

It's simply one of those records that treads a lot of ground, sonically. I get excited with almost every track. There's just a ton of balls here, and this albums has quickly risen to one of my favorites, if not THE favorite record of the year. It's not often that I think everyone should check out a band...I mean, I really love The Sword and Mastodon, but their appeal is very much in the "metal" mode. Walking Papers is definitely rock, but I think with a very wide appeal.

This is great rock and roll. Take my advice and check it out.

Favorite Tracks:

- Two Tickets and a Room *(Favorite)*
- The Whole World's Watching
- Your Secret's Safe With Me
- The Butcher
- Capital T

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