Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Ian Grimble and Richard Matthews of Communion Music at 2KHz, Crouch End, London
The places that Three Blind Wolves take us are desolate places where everyone's fighting with themselves. They've got nothing left but spirit and a pit of fire burning a hole in their guts, making them crazy, making them want to be better than they currently are. They are people wanting other people to be much better than they currently are. They are warring in their spaces. It's what we think we hear. They're getting longer in the tooth and they're getting simultaneously drunker, with every passing day. It's the way that the characters in songs like "Tall Man Riding" and "Gold On The Cross" seem to start their days that's most telling in how they're bound to get through them and how they're planning on having them end. There are bits of moments that ride on exquisite harmonies and they must reflect the parts of a day that seem to be going right, or are just setting themselves up for the fall. It's a great lunch - a nice soup, some peace and fucking quiet on a sunny mid-day - before diving headlong right back into the grind, into some Dilbert-like work environment, where you're surrounded by nothing but imbeciles with nothing better to do than to micromanage and cause you uncomfortable stress.
Three Blind Wolves introduces us to the kinds of mornings where you're feeling cautiously optimistic, like this day could turn out to be alright. The orange juice went down alright and the cereal was, well, cereal - always pretty great as long as the milk holds. You've thrown your coat on, pulled a cap down over your ears and you're out the door, into a morning that's not too frosty and not too pleasant. It's a morning that goes ahead and finishes waking you up, but it's not one that's going to send you cursing, trying to beat it back. You get out to your car - the one that you've had forever, with the rust creeping in around the wheels and the back bumper, where the road salt has climbed and latched on for dear life, corroding like hell - and you try to start it. It just gives you that whinny, the one that you never want to hear. It's a dead hunk of junk and now your day's in the tank.
Lead singer Ross Clark, of this group based out of Glasgow, wouldn't know the first thing about sugar coating this situation. It's a real shit and that's all there is too it. It's not going to stop you from trying to make something of it - to not sweat the little things (it's just a dumb car after all and you've still got your bloody health) - but there's a pall that's set in and it's going to run you in circles. It's going to make you turn loud at moments and it's going to make you smoke more cigarettes than you thought you had, than you intended to. It's going to make you cringe more and it's going to surprise you more. If you take the failure of an automobile out of the story, and water the circumstances down just a touch, it's not too unlike most every day. The swings of emotion are subtle, but affecting. They make us boil and they tenderize our shoulder muscles in the next scene, so that we're not sure how to regard our lives at all. You just leave it to the dirt.
*Essay originally published March, 2012
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