Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Danny Reisch and Grant Johnson at Good Danny's, Austin, Texas
There are two hotels that are tied for the worst places that I've ever slept in my life. The first was in Peoria, Illinois, where I made it a bit of a challenge to try and stay in the cheapest and most interesting place I could find. The room was one of the most depressing and god-awful places that I've ever seen. It had furniture that had seen better days 30 years ago and the carpeting and bed were covered in stains. It was better to not wonder what those stains were first, before they were stains on carpeting and a bed. The one chair provided was a rusted folding chair and the television set didn't work. It was just what I was looking for. The other place was in Woodstock, NY, a last minute check-in after a Midnight Ramble. The parking lot was empty save for two or three cars and yet, when we went up to the desk to get a room, the man watching a UFC fight told us that there wasn't anything available. Then he said to wait, he did have one room, but he thought we should look at it first. It was his room upstairs, and it had just been painted, but we could have it for the night if we wanted it. It was late so we took him up on it. The door to the outside didn't shut or lock. Didn't sleep that night, not a wink.
It's places like these where many Diamond Rugs songs seem as if they could have been written in. Even when Steve Berlin's bouncy horn parts burst into the mixture, many of the songs that come out of main songwriters - Deer Tick's John McCauley, The Black Lips' Ian Saint Pe and Dead Confederate's Hardy Morris - are wonderfully depressed. Whether it's the issue with not being able to hold the hooker that you think you might be in love with because she's not really yours and she's only there because of the money or the eternal fuck-up's lament about his loneliness, it's all coming from a place that needs to be forgotten, a place that can be chased with booze and drugs. And so that's what happens and then the dark and depressing episodes become something else altogether. They become just a little more triumphant because they were so rough and still mostly corrected through a few benders and some words.
Diamond Rugs Official Site