The Burning Hell

People

by Chris Conaton

25 June 2013

 
cover art

The Burning Hell

People

(Headless Owl / Cargo)
US: 16 Apr 2013
UK: 10 May 2013

Mathias Kom and a rotating cast of whomever is available record and perform as the Burning Hell. People is the Burning Hell’s sixth album since 2007, but the torrid pace hasn’t seemed to hurt Kom’s songwriting ability. The nine songs on the album each tell a self-contained story narrated in a charming speak-singing voice by Kom. Some tracks take a character from point A to point B. The wistful “Grown Ups” recalls a boy and girl who played highly imaginative games as children reconnecting as adults, while the epic “Barbarians” tells the tale of a single Viking father and his infant song. Others are more reflective or digressive, like the shy pick-up artist in “Wallflowers” or the rambling sounds-like-a-true-story of “Realists”. Regardless of the style, though, Kom is a witty an engaging storyteller, and his backing music is always catchy. The Burning Hell employs a lot of clarinet and accordion, but they also aren’t afraid to rock out when the song calls for it. Kom’s particular combination of these different elements makes People resemble a less drug-oriented Hold Steady mixed with a less drunk Gogol Bordello. It’s a winning formula that makes for a unique and highly entertaining album.

People

Rating:

 

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong online. Please consider a donation to support our work as an independent publisher devoted to the arts and humanities. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where advertising no longer covers our costs. We need your help to keep PopMatters publishing. Thank you.

 


//comments
//Mixed media
//Blogs

20 Questions: Nashville Singer-Songwriter Natalie Hemby

// Sound Affects

"Natalie Hemby's Puxico is a standout debut from a songwriter who has been behind the scenes for over a decade.

READ the article