Both Swain and Lamb noted the heavier music they were listening to while recording Fits of Reason, from Middle Eastern psych-rock bands of the '60s and '70s to Metallica and Mastodon, and Lamb and I enthusiastically praised the first Queens of the Stone Age album as one of the greatest rock records of the last 20 years. That led me to referencing Fits of Reason as perhaps Brown Bird's "Desert Sessions," which got a hearty chuckle from Lamb, while Swain declared, "I don't know if I would call this our 'loud' record, because the next one may be louder!" Lamb's six-string keeps pace with the galloping tambourine on "Seven Hells," and his snake-charmer riff on "Nine Eyes" won't leave my head. The duo get rocking on the instrumental "Iblis" (an Islamic reference to the devil), while "Hitchens" opens up with Swain's jazzy bass line before Lamb comes in with a subtly ominous riff.
MorganEve shines on "Bow For Blade," singing like the Andrews Sisters while delivering the lines, "Toil cheek to cheek and bow for blade/Braced in flame and souls to keep/desire won't let the monster sleep/We burn bright and broil in our crusade." Swain's voice floats perfectly alongside Lamb's on the hellbent waltz of "Wayward Daughter" as well as the hypnotic closing track "Caves."
The Fits of Reason disc will be available at the show (a vinyl release is forthcoming) and is available for download at iTunes and brownbird.bandcamp.com. Get ready to feed off the energy Brown Bird bring to the stage, with Swain thumping away and Lamb in constant motion. Their live show is quickly becoming the stuff of legend. The duo's recent shows have been sold out and downright bananas, so get there early.
BROWN BIRD + VIRO/MIRE + MILKMAN'S UNION | Saturday, April 20 @ 7 & 10 pm | One Longfellow Square, Portland | $20 | 207.761.1757 | brownbird.net
: Music Features
, BROWN BIRD, MorganEve Swain