I'm a little hesitant to link to Jordan Blum's review of The Curtains of Night's excellent debut, Lost Houses, for fear of driving traffic its way. I'm especially hesitant since I'd actually forgotten that Delusions of Adequacy, the Web site that published said review, existed, although it has been around since 1999.
But Blum's review is, frankly, one of the biggest misses I've ever read (The Curtains of Night does not sound like Opeth, especially since the band does not make music), and I'd feel much worse about not sharing it than poking fun at it. Such foolery happens after the jump.
1. "Lost Houses, the debut disc by The Curtains of Night, is so insultingly bad that it doesn’t deserve an opening line better than this." As terrible as this review is, this is the most brilliantly functional first sentence I have ever read. Imagine the possibilities of its interchangeability. A flow chart of sorts: Is the record good? If yes, Option A. If no, Option B.
Option A: Change the name of the album and the name of the band. Then pick a positive adverb and change bad to good. Instant lede.
Option B: Change the name of the album and the name of the band. Lean/rock: Instant lede.
2. The Curtains of Night has "a record deal." "Many unique, struggling bands don’t." I'm pretty sure "a record deal" at Holidays for Quince—the locally owned small enterprise run by two Chapel Hill musicians, Jenks Miller and Heather McEntire—consists of handshakes, high fives and free release shows at the 506. Oh, and hookers [made of plastic...maybe these are called clothes hangers?], [drug-free] cocaine, fancy cars [but not really, since these folks live in Carrboro] and red- [shag] carpet treatment. FANCE! It's what every struggling band needs, really, even if they're shitty.
3. Contrary to what The Curtains of Night claim on that bastion of truthiness that is MySpace, Blum concludes that this band is neither Ghettotech—"a form of electronic dance music that combines hip hop and techno"—nor Healing and Easy Listening—"usually quiet and peaceful, which this muck isn’t." Oh, and it's also not Death Metal, exemplified, for Blum, by Opeth (fuck Opeth, by the way). Also, irony, sarcasm and just plain ol' humor don't work in this post-9/11 world, y'all.
4: " If the 'music' is supposed to represent shifting emotions and affective situations in the tradition of Post Rock, this band fails miserably, and could learn a lot from acts like Godspeed You! Black Emperor and 65daysofstatic (who are brilliant)." Yes, all good metal bands need to learn more from Godspeed! You Black Emperor. I felt like Death Magnetic needed more bassoon, personally. Also, I've heard that Do Make Say Think is playing on the new Mastodon joint (due March 24), and that Weedeater is collaborating with the N.C. Symphony on a fiddle-and-amp tune called "Devil Went Down to Dixies's House (And Got Wicked Fucking Stoned)." So pitted.
5. Also, pretty sure dude just opened the whole noise vs. music debate again. Whoops! He may actually need to resolve that not all metal displays "impressive musicianship and speed" before getting into something quite that intense. Actually, he may need to get familiar with slow/stoner/sludge/doom metal—or, more precisely, that it exists—before reviewing a record like this again. Just a thought, though.
BONUS POINTS: "Man, grrlz can't play metal." Blum never says that, but he did drop these gems: "Annoying girl screeching," "Nora isn’t conveying guttural, demonic tones through her voice," and "a whinny, spoiled teenager." Zings, all.