Listening to the new Handsome Boy Modeling School album has prompted me to go back and listen to some of Dan the Automator's previous work, including his masterpiece, Lovage aka Music to Make Love to Your Old Lady By. Now, the title is a bit doofy, and I was attracted to the album expecting something that'd be comedic. However, after listening to the album I found that it was hilarious at times, but it's actually a very dark, moody album, far removed from comedy. The album has a very specific atmosphere. It feels like it should be sung in a smoky lounge, with some neon lights, late at night.
The album has vocals by Mike Patton and Jennifer Charles, and the way they sing together is unlike anything I've heard before. It feels very intimate, particularly on the album's best tracks Book of the Month and Sex (I'm A). This is a very different sort of vocal styling from what Patton uses with Fantomas or Faith No More, and it's much more interesting.
The production just owns. Automator uses strings, horns and vocal samples to create a canvas of beats. Some of the best moments are the intro to 'To Catch a Thief' and the horn samples of 'Stroker Ace.' Another highlight of the album, which now includes basically everything about it, are the lyrics, which are both hilarious and so perfectly delivered. 'Book of Month' is a back and forth of metaphors between Patton and Charles, including classic lyrics like "You are the griddle, I am the meat" and my personal favorite lyric, in which Charles talks to Patton about her rotting body, saying "Jealous of the flies and the worms inside me"
The album is completely unique. It's lounge, but also trip hop. Just look at the cover art, clearly this is an awesome album.
Handsome Boy Modeling School (11/13/2004)
Elysian Fields at Tonic (3/18/2006)
Serge Gainsbourg: History of Melody Nelson (4/8/2006)
1 day ago