Album Review

Royal Baths – “Litanies” – [Woodsist]

Thurston Hunger   12/11/2010   12-inch, A Library

Their 7″ (as just Baths) was tremendously tremulous. They still
languish in malificent malaise on this full length, the mournful
exhausted-with-life spirit thrives, but a lot of tracks have
these poppy background bop-bop-bop vox with the moony and effete
lead vocals. Still Royal Baths have the talky ghost harmonies
and/or overlapping voices that seem like ice skates going in opposite
directions. Great tension, heightened by guitar work that seems
to enjoy its fear of heights, leaning over the mack truck simple
drum prodding below. Lyrics often capture the feeling of a
fallen angel enjoying the view he had on the plummet down.
Self-reviling rivals revelry. In the studio, their guitar effects
are lacey and varied like cobwebs on corpses. “After Death” and
“I Detest” sparkle, as if Laugh-In were filmed in Hades. “Drudgery”
echoes the angst of “Be Afraid of Me” from the aforementioned Rad
Key 7″. Rapturous running with San Franscissors…

-Thurston Hunger

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