Grand Mal

Love Is the Best Con in Town

by Zeth Lundy

10 January 2007

 

As the pianos and keyboards saturating its cover art suggests, Love Is the Best Con in Town, Grand Mal’s fourth LP, is less “rock” than the band’s previous records.  Trading in the glam and garage for more mid-tempo piano-based frolics and pocket-sized orchestrations, singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Bill Whitten leads a supporting cast of 20-plus musicians through bared-knuckled drowsers like “Cold As the Stars” and “Not a Penny to My Name”.  Despite its long list of contributing credits, Love Is the Best Con maintains an intimate sound, emphasizing the sober calculation of Whitten’s songs.  Still, there’s always room to rock: Whitten kicks out some mangy Stones-struck riffage on “Count Me In!”, asking, “Do you wanna go for broke tonight? / Do you wanna rock ‘n’ roll? / Well, c’mon!”  C’mon, indeed, but prepare for less bruises on this particular jaunt.

Love Is the Best Con in Town

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

Call for Essays on Topics in Culture; Present, Past and the Speculative Future

// Announcements

"PopMatters (est. 1999) is a respected source for smart long-form reading on a wide range of topics in culture. PopMatters serves as…

READ the article