Movie Star Junkies - Melville (2008)

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Movie Star Junkies - Melville (2008) mp3

The Movie Star Junkies formed in 2005 as a duo. This release, Melville, makes it sound like the bands been around for decades, however. It is moody, slightly sinister and timeless. To understand it you have to have an appreciation for the dark side of life. No, not serial killers and cannibalistic tribes. What you have to appreciate is the sleaze, despair and motivations of those who try to make it through each day without drinking themselves to death or robbing a bank. 
As the title suggests, Melville is linked to writer Herman Melville. The band, which is on Voodoo Rhythm Records this time around, decided to create a concept album not about Melville, but for Melville. It wanted to do tales of dirty love, religion and shipwrecks. As the first song, The Curse, shows, the band is up to the task.

If there is one constant throughout the releases dozen songs, it is Stefanos vocals (with the exception of the instrumental Id Rather Not) and the gritty alleyway sound the rest of the band produces (it is no longer a duo in any normal sense of the word). The lyrics, however, are all over the place in their story telling, which serve the songs well. Make no mistake, though, the idea of an album for Herman Melville, and one would assume the band would hope he would enjoy it, is not an easy task. How do you write for the writer of Moby Dick? I dont know, but the Movie Star Junkies do and this is the proof.

To give you an idea of the chances this Italian band takes, there are actually two versions of "Melville" on the release. The first is a slinky ode that starts with some marching drums, lazy guitar and Stefano proclaiming, Wake up, my little king! The second version, and this is where the bands genius kicks into overdrive for including it, is Melville (Brass Version), recorded in 2008 in Italy and performed by Banda Rumorosa Bovesana. It sounds as if this came directly from the past and is performed by a group of people who have been up all night drinking, yet are still able to play their instruments far better than should be humanly possible.

Releases like this do not come around often. They have limited appeal, and they are hard to find. Thats what makes them all the more valuable. Its not something youll stumble across on your radio, and its not something youll hear playing at your mall record store. No, the trashy guitars and sex-fueled organ sounds will seep from windows in low rent districts and dark pubs where no sane person would ever enter.

To listen to Dead Love Rag, which has been covered by Mama Rosin, sums it all up beautifully. There is perhaps no other song that exemplifies exactly why the Movie Star Junkies sound works. It is a haunting number that rests on the cusp of evil without losing its grip. Few other bands could pull it off, and thats why few are even trying. The Movie Star Junkies understand this and that understanding enables the members to make music that is ageless. Melville is what they would have made had they been walking the same streets as the writer.
Would the writer enjoy this if he were alive today? I dont know, but hed be a fool not to...		
01 - the curse.mp3 10.621 MB
02 - little boy.mp3 6.885 MB
03 - lucky horse.mp3 6.609 MB
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