Murder by Death Live in Cleveland

When I go to shows, I like to keep myself in the dark about the openers. I suppose I do this in hopes of being utterly surprised. Usually it’s the bad kind of surprise and I find myself, bored and disappointed. For this show, however, both openers nailed it. The first band, Linfinity, was overly loud, strangely energetic, and a treat to watch.

The second, Ha Ha Tonka, was one of the most fun bands I’ve ever seen live. Their name is silly, but their music and presence is out of this world. The first few songs were a bit slow and not my style, but out of nowhere they transformed into a killer jam band. Their last song was an overcrowded party featuring members of the previous band and Murder By Death. Even better? Both bands sound wonderful recorded.

Murder By Death took the stage at 11:00 p.m. to a crowded, hot, dark venue of eager kids. Before they fully took the stage the crowd was wild, throwing their PBR’s in the air and swaying like Adam Turla was already serenading them. The second he did open his mouth, the crowd cheered and the party began.

The first few songs were classic old school Murder by Death and no one enjoyed it as much as the band themselves. They were at home playing their old time favorites. Early in the set Turla announced, “We’re going to play some new songs for a bit.” It’s always exciting to see bands play their new songs live. Though they only played a couple.The crowd knew the words as if these songs were ten years old. They drank, they sang, they smiled. It was a party.

And then started the slew of whiskey songs. “All of our songs are about doomsday or whiskey.” This elicited lots of “fuck yeahs!!!!!” And rightly so.

For the encore, the band slipped off the stage, drank and waited as the crowd screamed louder and louder for their return. When they finally emerged from the dark hallway near the stage, Turla said, “We’re going to play a song from the new record. The one that seems to be getting good responses.” He started the chord and hesitated, but launched right into my favorite off of the new record, “Piece by Piece”.

Murder by Death’s music is dark and serious, yet, seeing them live is a dance party. The band’s music is powerful, captivating, and a blast even when the message is anything except this.

Show took place Sunday May 9th @ the Grog Shop – Cleveland, Ohio

Murder By Death – Good Morning, Magpie

death

Artist: Murder By Death
Album: Good Morning, Magpie
Label: Vagrant
Purchase: Website Pre-Order
Release Date: April 6, 2010

Overall: 9.5
Music: 10
Lyrics: 8
Production: N/A

Murder By Death has consistently been in the background of my life. One of those bands that all my friends loved, but one of the bands I never quite fell in love with. I’ve seen them live twice, once on accident and once on purpose. Both times, I was blown away by their stage presence, the dedication of their fans and their ability to transform completely from album to album.

And so, here I am, years later, still not convinced Murder by Death is my cup of tea. But the weather is gloomy, my friends wont stop talking about the genius of Good Morning, Magpie, and so, I decide to give one final plunge into the world of MBD’s music.

I hit play and instantly, I am frozen. The first track “Hentuckey Bourbon” is only 34 seconds long, yet I was hooked. It’s slow, pretty, and one of the best record openers I have heard in years.

My initial idea was to write my thoughts upon my first listen, but I couldn’t. I had to stop to let it all sink in. I listened to this record five times in a row without ever moving. I simply could not.

The stand out track for me is “Piece by Piece”. The opening is almost jolly sounding while the actual tone and lyrics of the song are moody and dark.

For the first time in years, I had finally understood the allure of Murder By Death. The music is complicated, solid, well rounded, and each song is constructed in such a manner that it evokes strong human emotion.

“Foxglove” is another track that caught my attention. The chord progression and strings in the background are reminiscent of older Murder By Death, but also fresh and exciting.

In reality, I can’t say which song is the best because with each listen I change my mind.

Murder By Death is classic American noir in music form and right now, this is precisely the only thing I want and need. I don’t drink or dance, but by the end of this record, I wanted a bottle of whiskey and a pair of dancing shoes.

Albums In Stores Tomorrow 3-4-08

Here are some albums hitting stores tomorrow. Let us know which ones you’ll be picking up.

The Morning Light – Sounds Of Love
Our Last Night – The Ghosts Among Us
Baumer – Were It Not For You
Flogging Molly – Float
Murder By Death – Red Of Tooth And Claw
Take Action! Vol. 7 CD/DVD

Murder By Death Pre-Order

Murder By Death’s Red of Tooth and Claw is available now for preorder. You can listen to “Comin’ Home” posted on their Myspace. Red of Tooth and Claw is available everywhere March 4th, but if you preorder today you’ll be able to snag the vinyl or tshirt.  The band just kicked off their tour with Clutch and will be on the road with them until the end of March.

The North Atlantic Stream Entire Album

San Diegoâ┚¬Ã¢”ž¢s The North Atlantic have posted a new e-card with a stream of their album Wires In The Walls on We Put Out Records. The band will remain on the road throughout the rest of the year supporting Planes Mistaken For Stars then These Arms Are Snakes.

w/ Murder By Death
10.17 Chain Reaction – Anaheim, CA
w Mustangs and Madras
10.20 Denver, CO 3 Kings Tavern
w/ Planes Mistaken For Stars
10.21 Wichita, KS – Eagles Lodge North
10.22 Oklahoma City, OK – The Conservatory
10.23 Austin, TX – Emo’s
10.25 Baton Rouge, LA – Spanish Moon
10.26 Birmingham, AL – Cave 9
10.27 Gainesville, FL â┚¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ The Fest playing at Bar One
10.28 Gainesville, FL – The Fest
w/ These Arms Are Snakes
11.06 Charlotte, NC – Tremont Music Hall
11.07 Atlanta, GA – Drunken Unicorn
11.08 Tallahassee, FL – Club Downunder
11.09 Orlando, FL – AKA Lounge 11.10
11.10 Jacksonville, FL – Jackrabbit’s
11.11 Gainesville, FL – Common Ground
11.13 Houston, TX – Walter’s On Washington
11.14 Austin, TX – Emo’s
11.15 Denton, TX – Hailey’s
11.17 Tucson, AZ – Skrappy’s
11.18 San Diego, CA – Casbah

Murder By Death Video On mtvU

Murder By Deathâ┚¬Ã¢”ž¢s video for â┚¬Ã…”Brotherâ┚¬? is up for voting on MTVUâ┚¬Ã¢”ž¢s â┚¬Ã…”The Freshmenâ┚¬?. Help support the band and vote here.

The band has also announced dates with the Appleseed Cast

09-14-06 Memphis, TN Hi Tone Cafe
09-17-06 Oklahoma City, OK The Conservatory
09-18-06 Springfield, MOOutland Ballroom
09-19-06 Omaha, NE Sokal Underground
09-20-06 Ames, IA The Maintanence Shop