Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Sound engineering by Mike Gentry
Look, Miles Kurosky should never have had to put up with the fickle world of indie rock and roll. He should never have had to become flustered and frustrated by the unnaturalness of it. He wasn't meant for it. He was meant for writing the songs. He was meant for the singing and playing the parts of it, but he should have never had to deal with advancing shows, deal with club owners and sound guys and getting cornered by stupid fans wanting to talk about stupid things, or dealing with having to settle at the ends of nights. He should have been allowed to stay in at night. He should have been allowed to just stay home, reading books, re-reading books and, when he found the time and the inspiration, write the kinds of melodies that he writes, that no one else out there writes. He should have been allowed to just make songs and then not have to worry about what came next - that endless road of seeking adulation or just of seeking anything resembling attentiveness, anything more than a blank stare, connected to an arm holding a sweating beer glass. He should have been allowed to be happily naïve, or at the least, not see other lesser writers find greater acclaim and then be stuck wondering what the fuck was wrong with everybody. As the frontman of San Francisco band Beulah, Kurosky was arguably the most gifted songwriter in the entire cultish Elephant 6 collective, and still, throughout much of that band's short history, it was easy to repetitively ask, "What the fuck IS wrong with everybody?" It should be noted that Kurosky is and has been one of my favorite lyricists. His way with words and placing them expertly in music is beyond reproach and he recognizes it. In the documentary film, "A Good Band Is Easy To Kill," there are plenty of moments when you find yourself not liking the man, but when given a chance to really talk and connect with him, you realize why that was. He was a man - even when there was some okay fame (though no fortune) coming to he and his old band - who rightfully felt that he was being given the short end of the stick more times than not and after so long, it cracks you. He felt belittled by the world at-large, a world unable to appreciate the superior pop music he was making. He most definitely WAS better than a lot of the chubs out there getting what HE wanted. It would turn anyone into a character who might be a bit less than flattering. With his first solo album, "The Desert Of Shallow Effects," Kurosky hits on insecurities, as well as getting continually slighted. When he was here, with just a few days left on his current tour, he claimed that this was it. He wasn't going to do this anymore. No more shows, cause he couldn't find the point in it, the point in fighting the fight anymore. Half of me doesn't believe him, but -- even though the math doesn't work out - 90-percent of me absolutely believes him. The record has indications all over it, hinting that this is a swan song. He asks to please be shot off to the moon. He continues on one of the record's stand-outs, "The World Won't Last The Night," "Because the world's a stage and the role I played was a walk-on/There were no lines, no alibis, just a small union wage/I was an honest man who took a traitor's stand for his country/History, please remember me, but try to be kind." Just listen. Fuck being kind, just listen. It's all he wants.