spoo

Spookyland | The Silly Fucking Thing

by Lior Phillips

So the people who hear this song will react quite dramatically. Like a plague has spewed across the floor they’re standing on and they suddenly have no choice but to split into two different crowds on opposite ends of the room: The ones who think this sounds absolutely silly, and the ones who, once they hear it, won’t be able to live without it. I am of the latter plague-runners, fully embalmed in Spookyland.

The silly fucking thing about us as listeners is that we don’t often embrace someone likely to be pegged as an “outsider artist”. Remember when Joanna Newsom chose to defy the norm? God those naysayers were foghorning for days. Instead of cultivating the attack, she forged ahead and presented herself the only way she knew how – with delightful and authentic decorum.

As it plays out, The Silly Fucking Thing starts resembling a cult procession unto itself, whether it’s a product of age (he’s 23), an epiphany (I mean he’s only 23) or just general gut-clawing heartbreak he’s singing about, the more Marcus Gordon diabolically strains his mesmerizing voice, it sounds as though it’s separate to his creative output – something tamed only by singing. It swells, grabbing a hold of you as Gordon solemnly repeats, “hold onto my heart the silly fucking thing you keep breaking.” He wields a trill reminiscent of The Tallest Man On Earth, The Smashing Pumpkins, Neil Young and Bob Dylan. But, even with ‘sound-alikers’ he certainly doesn’t sound like any of them. It is the sentiment he exerts that feels familiar. The push outwards, the exhale of emotional distress. He manages to infuse each guitar reverb with a weightiness intricate enough, but never bookish, melancholic but still hopeful. It’s the art of having something that distracts you enough without making you feel disturbed and when you land up focusing on it – it’s exciting enough you can’t possibly look away.

So…which side are you on?

‘The Silly Fucking Thing‘ is taken from the forthcoming Rock and Roll Weakling. Pre-order here.

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