|09-09-2008, 06:33 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Sep 2008
Willard Grant Conspiracy
I have been introduced to Willard Grant Conspiracy over the last few weeks and am impressed to say the least. The main man is Robert Fisher and he looks nothing like the chess player.
Robert Fisher is touring as solo acoustic and appearing at my favorite venue on 23rd September.
I have purchased 3 Willard Grant Conspiracy albums in anticipation of his show.
Regard The End from 2003.
Let It Roll from 2006.
Pilgrim Road from 2008.
The are all markedly different in musical style though lyrically all rather somber and tell many stories including those of loss and spiritual questioning.
Regard The End is for me the strongest of the three. Two tracks stand out as absolute high points in an album that is very good from the beginning to the end. Ghost Of The Girl In The Well, which has Kristian Hersh singing backing vocal, along with The Suffering Song are outstanding with Fishers deep voice telling these sad tales in a manner that leaves the listener hanging of every word sung. With these 2 songs initially the stand outs after several plays tracks such as The Trials Of Harrison Hayes, Beyond the Shore, Twistification and Soft Hand make one stand up and take note that this album is not a 2 trick recording.
Let It Roll is a harder edged record. The first track Distant Shore follows the same path as Regard The End but the title track that follows throws the dynamic of the album out of the expected direction as it rocks and has Fisher singing in a manner that reminds one of Jim Morrison with the song lasting a heady 9 minutes. Let It Roll, the occasionally moody Skeleton, Flying Low and Crush another up tempo track that has a minimalistic drone from violins and Guitars filling in the background, all stand out.
Pilgrim Road. A compete departure from the up tempo direction of Let it Roll. Pilgrim Road is a recording that demands to be listened to or discarded. It is not for casual background listening. A moody insular album of songs of the questioning of faith, suicide and many more subjects for those that like lyrics that ask one to think. This is a difficult listen in comparison to previous albums. Less tuneful and more introspective. Stand out tracks are The Great Deciver, the chamber style of Painter Blue and a good cover of Miracle On 8th Street by American Music Club. I suspect that this album would divide fans of Willard Grant Conspiracy. I have no issue with it though suspect that I would not be playing this as often in the future. I also have no idea how Robert Fisher would interpret these morose songs in an acoustic set.
I look forward to his show.