Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Shawn Biggs at Studio Paradiso, San Francisco, California
The Jezabels take us into some blistering evenings, where the temperatures haven't dropped off too much from the daytime highs, even though the sun's set and the birds have been shutting up. They take us into some boiling rivers, ones that are manmade and screaming. The steam and the fog have been coming in out of the west and there's no telling who's going to take the brunt of it tonight. It's one great mystery, but there's a notion that everyone's going to at least get clipped by it. It will touch everyone and make things sketchy. Character will be tested and love will be stretched or abandoned, however the cards are laid or the hands fall and touch.
The group from Sydney, Australia, is graphic about some of the ways that things could go. They approach the discussion of the gray areas that dot everything, with eyes wide open and mouths plying descriptive words. There's someone who returns before the finish of an endless summer and there's no way to comprehend if that's good or bad. It feels bad. It doesn't feel great. Someone's disappointed. There's a residue that sticks to all of these songs, like a greasy butter slick that keeps them sliding easily between the bitter and the sweet. Hayley Mary sings on "City Girl":
Gee, I get out on the streets late and I walk
Let it hurl, unfurl on the world, go berserk
Get on your own turf
Someone will hand you a sweet proposition one day
And you'll say, say, "G'day
How you doin' Fortune?"
You'll be a city girl soon.
Gee, I get rush
I get shivers inside when you call
Let it all unroll like a troll on you
Get in the bar and grill
Rubbin' them titties on edges of cities and worlds
Let the old control go home and groom,
You'll be a city girl soon."
It sounds like an interesting proposition and an even more interesting thought about what it could actually mean to someone to become a city girl. Mary sings about what it would mean to love too hard, to want too much and in the Fleetwood Mac-sounding "Rosebud," she just sings about holding out for love, making it feel like sitting in a pine tree in the sun, like the purring wings of a hummingbird. The wait could be because "you can't rely on the common man," or it could just be because the fog has gotten so thick.