reddit: the front page of the internet
It’s weird this abbreviation is the more used subreddit, isn’t it? The ‘steampoweredgiraffe’ one isn’t widely used. Both though, have pretty terrible header images with stretched pixelated graphics and or out-of-date images. Makes me cringe to even point you in this direction, but I’m glad we have some reddit stuff going on.
I’m not sure how WE interact on reddit. I’ve seen other creators do it- but I’ve yet to master it.
I will pipe in on some interesting posts about MK III and it feeling more “self aware” or having a “sold out” sound.
I don’t like dissecting my own songs for everyone, as I like reading other peoples interpretations…but who cares.
As fans you dig deeper anyway. So I can share my thoughts on the album and you can take it as you will.
So there’s not a ton of reviews on our albums that aren’t MK III. And certainly that’s because of the growth and the number of people listening to us. So, typical opinions with bands is that you find that one really good CD right? And then you want more of the same.
And I’m usually disappointed in other bands. I keep waiting for The Killers to release another Sam’s Town. Finally they did Battle Born…which is a pretty sweet album. But it took a butt ton of “meh” content for me to be satisfied.
I dunno…when I compare all our albums its super biased. Because I see the progress…the growth…the emotions behind the songs…and the exploration.
2-Cent Show definitely created a bridge we couldn’t go down (Jon’s progressing music). Jon’s contributions of Ju Ju Magic, Little Birdie, and the…Technology song at the end were too spacy for my tastes. And don’t they sound so disjointed from the rest of the album? I loved JuJu live…never understood what happened to it on the album. Different key…sounds weird. I dunno. It was four artists trying to piece something coherent together.
But without mine and David’s insistence on the “road trip across America” feel…it falls apart. Thankfully there’s those really rich folky sounds in 2-Cent Show along with AEH and such. It makes for a consistent album.
Certainly…MK III is lacking the folk. You have 50s, 60s, and 70s in the nostalgic vein with songs like I’ll Rust With You, She Said Maybe, and Rollerskate King- but I think we time traveled out of the 20s and 30s too far for some folks.
When we created the band the idea was that “no genre is off limits.” The robots have been around so long…their number of songs would cover such a wide variety.
The retro songs are the staple.
The other ones on the album? Well. Exploration. They deviate from what’s expected perhaps. From any sort of perceived formula.
MK III has some of my favorite songs…David’s Wired Wrong and She Said Maybe I’m so familiar with…they could have been released on Album 2 had we the space.
I’ll Rust With You is certainly my pick for stand out song written by me. And Ghost Grinder. They sound like “SPG” to me.
Mecto Amore is the odd duck I think stylistically. I can’t speak for that…because its my own thing. It’s the song I wrote for me…about me (well, and the band) and it’s purely selfish adoration of the melody. I like singing it.
For me, it references a specific history in the band (Jon’s departure and our rise on Tumblr). Not only because that’s when it was written…but because that’s what I wrote it about.
Commentary on how David, Sam, and I feel about drugs, religion, and fame also runs rampant in the song. I look at it as a big throw-off. It’s a repetitive semi-poppy easy-to-sing song with too complicated of lyrics. And when you dissect them its angsty and depressing to contrast the upbeat melody.
Basically…all this commentary and emotion jammed into a cookie-cutter pop formula. And like the Spine essentially says…”same message…new paintjob.” Maybe it helps to imagine Rabbit force feeding the commentary down your throat while singing it. I dunno.
If Mecto Amore represents where 2-Cent Show left off quite literally…
Bleak Horizons represents right now. Turning to the scary unknown future. Not only as a team, but with our fans.
I thought it was pretty obvious, and maybe it is. But when I see reviews saying the sort of things they do….to me it’s like “yeah, don’t you see that right here? That’s what this song is all about!”
But of course…how everyone reacts to a song is different. As an artist you just hope there’s some semblance of understanding of my intention. But as with most of my work- I think those thoughts and expressions are for me primarily. Not necessarily for fans.
So many people tell me what Honeybee means to them- or Brass Goggles or AEH…
and those thoughts aren’t wrong. We wrote the songs feeling the way we did…and maybe some of them are more obvious than others. But you as an audience devour the content as you wish. What means something to me isn’t going to mean something to you necessarily.
For instance…Turn Back The Clock is nostalgia for Balboa Park- missing certain fans and seeing their children growing up. Nostalgic pain. And that could be applied to anyone’s perception of the band. If you came in on 2-Cent Show or the zoo…maybe that’s your painful nostalgia.
I can’t speak for every single song…but there’s certainly an overarching theme of “new” and “change” with the header and footer songs: SPG Intro, Mecto, Turn Back The Clock, and Bleak Horizons.
It’s funny because in my mind we’re singing about…all these concerns folks have…cliche band stuff like…”it’ll never be the same. I wish they could go back to how I remember them” etc, etc.
In that sense I feel its a very self aware album. When we bridged it together we knew the message we wanted to say. Even on the outside The album art is sleek and black…and yet you open it up and its still in its blueprint stage….
…representing the ever-changing image of the band? The sound? The reality of what went on while making it? Your choice.
And ultimately it is a transitory album because of how it leads into our next one.
I ultimately think the end of the album is a great warning.
Conceptual aesthetics aside for our next release…
the next album is once again going to just mix up any semblance of formula.