What fresh lunatic music is this? O’Death sounds like something you might hear at an oddball carnival in some dingy back room where admission is a wooden nickel and the moonshine is served from a kiddy pool by a hobo with a rusty ladle. There is something a little befuddling about the New York quintet and the music they make, but it appeals greatly to my weirdo senses.
Shades of Tom Waits and Rock Plaza Central add colour and depth to a sometimes pretty and other times daft musical landscape as these twisted folk songs play themselves out. Outside starts off friendly enough with the sparse arrangements of “Bugs,” but from this point on, the album becomes pear-shaped with one stomper after the other. “Look At the Sun” is a good example. It begins with gentleness and ends in a crash of singing voices and heavily beat upon instruments. Glorious.
There is little one can say to sell you on this album—except that it’s worth the listen if you’re at all in to something a bit different. This music speaks for itself but I’m not quite sure what it’s saying as it’s often speaking in a broken, old world, Jambalayan tongue. Mixing demented, backwoods folk with New York-style street smarts, Outside may be an acquired taste. But, if you’re a sponge like me, this music will gladly grab you in a gruff, weird uncle hug and tell you its strange boozy stories by firelight.