Two Cheers – Rollick (2017)
alternative, pop indie | 35:42 min | MP3, 320 kbps | 81 MB
The current line-up, a diverse group of scene outsiders, began testing out material for Rollick in late 2016, with Bryan molding and building up songs from the band's anarchic, anything-goes jam sessions. The concept for the album was to be an ode to Bryan's wife and muse Laura. Then tragedy struck: Bryan's mother, who had been battling a rare, nigh-untreatable cancer, took a turn for the worse. The band's show schedule as well as work on the album ground to a halt while Bryan took time to help his father care for her and spend time by her side during her last days.Even once recording recommenced, Bryan says it was difficult to return to songwriting and recording. "I'm not the kind of person that can go through something like that and come out the other end the same person. It really shook me to the core. I think that shows on this album, and it didn't come out as I envisioned it would this time. I only started to deal with the loss of my mother on the album's last two songs, ‘Hinterland' and ‘Rest Of My Life' and even there the lyrics are obscure and metaphorical."
Regardless, the new record captures the gravity of these life events in subtler, more cerebral ways: Owen Bickford's lush, aching synths surround Carlton White's melodic, strangely-ordered grooves and Austin Lutzke's thick, weighty bass-playing. In contrast to the guitars on Splendor, Bryan's and rhythm player Megan Marcoux's guitars are clean, delicate, and simple, meandering around Bryan's distinctive, impassioned vocals, often playing a textural role rather than stealing the show.
The album's lyrics all deal with three key women in Bryan's life, his grandmother, who passed in August 2016, his mother who passed in January 2017, and his wife, whom he married in August 2015. "Over My Shoulder", "Love You To Death", "Woman…", "Gift", and "No Good At Talking" are about Bryan's wife Laura and explore elements of devotion, inspiration, romance, and communication. These are juxtaposed against "Rollick" and "Too Late", which were written to his grandmother, Melahat, and which explore themes of regret, absence, and nostalgia. "Woodshed", "Hinterland", and "Rest Of My Life" finish off the record and are Bryan's first reflections about the loss of his mother earlier this year.
01. Two Cheers – Over My Shoulder
02. Two Cheers – Rollick
03. Two Cheers – Woman…
04. Two Cheers – Too Late
05. Two Cheers – Love You to Death
06. Two Cheers – Gift
07. Two Cheers – No Good at Talking
08. Two Cheers – Woodshed
09. Two Cheers – Hinterland
10. Two Cheers – Rest of My Life
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