Jeez, where to start with this little oddity! Alec K. Redfearn and the Eyesores have been around for over a decade, and this latest Cuneiform Records release is their seventh album overall. Now, we normally can count on Cuneiform to put out stuff that's a bit off the beaten path, but if you REALLY want to venture out into avenues unknown, this collection of cabaret, prog rock, avant-garde, folk,electronica, and jazz is something you might want to consider.
To be honest, even after listening to Sister Death a few times, I'm still not sure what to make of it. There's a wealth of different vocal styles (male and female), and the instrumentation is eclectic to say the least. Can't remember the last time I heard this much accordion in music of this nature, and it's almost jarring hearing that instrument so prominently on the almost polka-ish "Fire Shuffle" when it's interrupted by a scorching electric guitar solo and them some bluesy harmonica. These guys certainly utilize a ton of different instruments throughout the album, which does keep you on your toes, but at times it can get a bit overwhelming. There's also a sense of bleakness & doom in spots, like on "The 7 and 6", which almost sounds like a collision between The Doors and Smashing Pumpkins. For me the track that worked the best was "Hashishin", a fun tune with a cool Middle Eastern vibe complete with many guitar layers and intricate percussion.
Give Mr. Redfearn and his band some credit for coming up with something so bizarre and different-Sister Death is most certainly not going to be for everyones tastes, but it's an intriguing listen nontheless.
1. Fire Shuffle
3. The 7 and 6
5. Amplifier Hum
6. Black Ice
10. St. James Infirmary / Headless Emcee
11. Wings of the Magpie
12. In the Morning