Maturity and warmth replaces distortion and teenage-angst–the primary creative forces driving the anxiety fueled themes of the past two recordings, “Rot Gut, Domestic” and “Buzzard.” Some of those edges aren’t completely lost.
“Long Legged Blonde Memphis,” “Bleary-eye-d Blue” and “I Can’t Sleep My Eyes Are Flat” are the few songs amongst the 13 total tracks on Sling Shot that tie the triptych theme of the previous two records together with restrained aggression. However, reflection and longing dominates an acoustic affair throughout.
The west coast serves as an anchor on Sling Shot; “Hello, San Francisco. I don’t ever want to die, you got me sweating celery and never making any sense,” and side B’s opener, Los Angeles, “… book a motel with a feather bed; spend the nights high as a cabbage head; I wanna live in L.A.” Pretty pop songs soaked in sentiments and midwestern charm are aplenty.
Edwards and the band are at their best when swooning lines over pretty melodies like “sucking on a rib bone” and “building saucers out of sheets to blast off in” (“Getting’ fat” and “Lazy”).
“I Don’t” is a mature stroke of pop beauty –”kitchen sink, neo-nazi heartache back rub, a joker’s scrub, standing somewhere old with a mood ring” –from the lyrics down to the subdued performances. Tyler Watkins’ bass line services a steady heartbeat that barely exposes its color until the killer chorus comes and goes all too quick.
Edwards sums up how I feel about the whole record with one song:
“I don’ know how to say it, I cant, I don’t know how to say it so I don’t.”
The ambition and experimentation of previous records have been replaced by confidence, submission and romance. “Sling Shot To Heaven” is a collection of soulful, personal songs that are unabashed with love and a wanting to be loved in return.
I hate to say it but you’re a big girl now, Margot.
Thank you for wasting more time with me on the internet. Please eat some pizza and always, always, always pet those puppies,