. issue XVIII : i .

by barathron

. artist : timber timbre .
. album : creep on creepin’ on .
. year : 2011 .
. label : arts & crafts .
. grade : a .


Have you ever wondered what kind of music Elvis would play if his corpse appeared in some kind of loose nightmare café where everyone lounged around naked, drinking tea, possibly dead? The folks in Timber Timbre nailed whatever you’d call this genre when they put Creep On Creepin’ On together. ‘Nightmare Doo-Wop’ or ‘Horror Lounge’ would not be unfitting names, nor would ‘Funeral Waltz,’ or maybe, ‘Lurker Jazz.’ The combination of low, haunting music and tortured, surreal lyrical themes allude to something shrouded and sinister, like some drifter sitting alone under the fool moon, throwing rocks into a lake at three in the morning, smiling in the dark. As you might guess by the title, the album’s overall effect one of the creeps, but it’s also undeniably beautiful, tragic and sexy. Halfway through the title track, you’ll be surprised to find yourself thinking, “Maybe that freak by the lake has the right idea.” And he does. The album keeps getting better from there.

If you were put off by the band’s earlier folky, droning sound, you can rest assured that this album is a departure of an entirely new direction, a different beast altogether from their earlier work. If not for lead singer Taylor Kirk’s distinctive throaty croon, one might not be able to make a connection at all. If you’re a big fan of their previous stuff, you might be thrown off a little by the polish on this one (the polish of bones, I tell you!), but you’ll probably dig the disharmonic transition tracks, which are the kind of thing you might imagine Edgar Allen Poe listening to at night while he attempted to fall asleep, if only it weren’t for “those voices, by God, those accursed voices, which vex me to within an inch of my sanity each night for I know not how long!”

I personally have been waiting for this album for years without realizing it, something that says “Strange is Beautiful” in the saucy coo of Bing Crosby. All you musicians out there — check this album out and get on the Lurker Jazz scene!

by Dave Rockman