Days N’ Daze are Beautifully Cynic
written by Vaughn Oliver
Isn’t it great discovering a new sound or genre? When you hear something that you never knew could even have existed? It’s a feeling I experienced this past week when I stumbled across Houston, TX, locals, Days N’ Daze, and their 2013 release, Rogue Taxidermy. Name and artwork alone, this is an interesting album. Add in the heavy bluegrass thrash (‘thrashgrass’) style and lyrics focusing primarily on life and death, and you’ve got an amazing piece of work. Dissecting the pointlessness of existence is not an easy task to take on but, according to Days N’ Daze, you’re damned if you try and you’re damned if you don’t.
Call it misanthropy, call them cynics, this group sees life in a distinct way and is able to express that vision through the music. Some might call it ugly, and it can be. The opening track, titled ‘Rockabilly Impending Deathfuture’, begins with a guttural wailing followed by harsh sing-yelling stating that “All solace, all beauty, all innocence has been stripped away.” Not the most widely appealing statement, but this album isn’t to solace the disturbed, it’s for stripping the shiny coat of paint off of the grimey layer it covers.
Taking on the perspective of the addict, the lover, the pessimist, Rogue Taxidermy reveals to the world that it has a firm grasp on what it means to be a person who feels they matter – in a world where nothing actually does. This album unfurls many plots; the drunken-messed up relationships of our past, the spiraling addict who has moments of lucidity, the tale of one Lulu who makes terrible decisions. This release is written sometimes like a biography, often an autobiography, but always with a story or a message.
The music itself is such a strange, interesting combination of folk and punk, with more than slight hints of jazz and skiffle. Washboards and washtub basses a-plenty, Days N’ Daze play their music hard, breaking strings – and probably their own vocal chords – from time to time. But they know what they’re doing. They know how to write a damn good song, front to back. Maybe they were educated, or maybe they learned it from living that lifestyle, either way I am astonished by how raw and talented they come across.
Favourite tracks on this one include; ‘Day Gaunts’, ‘Goodbye Lulu’, and ‘Post Party Depression’.
Listen to this when you feel the world is against you. And then realize it is. And know that everyone else feels that way sometimes. It’s the best and worst thing that happens to all of us.
You can find Rogue Taxidermy HERE where you can name your price, or stream for free.
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written by Vaughn Oliver