Spider Bags

Goodbye Cruel World, Hello Crueler World

by Matthew Fiander

17 November 2009

 
cover art

Spider Bags

Goodbye Cruel World, Hello Crueler World

(Birdman)
US: 25 Aug 2009
UK: 25 Aug 2009

Goodbye Cruel World, Hello Crueler World makes one thing clear: We need more bands like Spider Bags. There is absolutely nothing careful about this album, which is what makes its ramshackle, rocking feel get you so worked up. There’s the psychedelic, stretched-out guitars jams like “Trouble”, the frayed country balladry of “Swimmer on a String”, and even the funky, sawdust blues of “Long White Desert Rose”. Spider Bags tackle each sound with a ragged confidence and meld them together into a cohesive, infectious soundtrack for your favorite dive bar.

There are barroom anthems like “It Always Loved to Happen”—where the band declares,“Life is spent between cigarettes and regret”—and the boozy shuffle of “Lord Please”. But quieter moments can be found, like the haunting, fuzzy closer “Here Now”, that the band pulls off with a brilliant restraint that doesn’t sap one ounce of the album’s momentum. These sweat-soaked songs are what rock music should be—worn at the edges, frantic, and coursing with whiskey-thinned blood. Sure, the band may push too far in small moments—“Que Viva el Rocanroll” is a pretty goofy sing-along—but the charm of these guys comes in its inability to pull it back. While the reigning the Hold Steady keeps the kids warm during those frigid Minnesota nights, Spider Bags will make them melt in North Carolina.

Goodbye Cruel World, Hello Crueler World

Rating:

 

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong on the Internet. Please consider a donation to support our work as independent cultural critics and historians. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where costs have risen and advertising has dropped precipitously. We need your help to keep PopMatters strong and growing. Thank you.

 

//comments
//related
//Mixed media
//Blogs

Saul Williams Commands Attention at Summerstage (Photos + Video)

// Notes from the Road

"Saul Williams played a free, powerful Summerstage show ahead of his appearance at Afropunk this weekend.

READ the article