Dec 5, 2007 - Daytrotter Studio, Rock Island, IL
- 1 Welcome to Daytrotter
- 2 Goliath
- 3 Jackie
- 4 Left Right Left
- 5 Mix Tape Honey
Popping Tonic, They Work At The Elixir
Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Sound Engineering by Patrick Stolley
Brooklyn's Butane Variations have a name for their brainstorms and the subsequent nights or the night's sequential sparkings. It sounds like more of a phrase about something you do - the imagined noise that comes rushing to the blind eye's windshield is one of a pressurized release, a deep-throated reverse suction that goes from the gut into the high ceilings with some spillage and splashing striking clean shoes below. Homespun with moonshine and melancholia, the songs that emerge from these focused sessions of experimenting and work seem to be branded with the shroud of ambivalence. They go out there and spout about the taste of George Washington's wooden teeth and kind of call him out as a punk. The next minute they're secular and then it's a swing over to the modestly spiritual carousel, with paupers and believers poofing into the center of their stories with their hands out and their jaws on the floor, just to pass this way or that in the next miracle minute.
The creative period they like to call "popping tonic" and the secret potion that they're summoning in these presumably late ass evening séances is one of romantic country music getting into a social mixer with a miscellaneous array of renegade vibrations that jiggle the sound and give it different colorings to go along with its constantly shifting parameter. The idea is never to be too sweet or to be too difficult, it's just to get to the knot and work it out with a two-handed massage. The group's self-titled debut on Achord Records doesn't spell out any particular definition or direction, just that the band is going to take it upon itself to relieve tension. It is going to go out of its way to mellow the fires, to douse the blaze with cold compresses and cool words that move like dusty tumbleweeds across a sandy panoramic skyline, beneath a fading orange blush. They've earned their coveted sainthood in their searching woes and desperate readings into the readings of palms. There's a lot of shivering before heat and then huddling with heads gently resting upon another, comforting whatever scary thoughts are rampaging upstairs.
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