The Daily Pravda's new single "Country & Western" has no country or Western to it.
Well, that's not exactly right.
Frontman David Jackel slides into the track with some twang, some drawl and swagger when he sings, "Daaarling don't go out tonight..." It could almost be some sort of freakish country tune (like that The The does Hank Williams album from the early '90s maybe?).
Then the band washes any wagon dust off the track with the crunch of electric guitars, buzzing synths and computer squeaks. In comes the New Romantic-meets-Morphine saxophone, drums sticks pounding toms, and Ruby Rose Fox cooing and screaming and wailing.
Pravda has the skill set to make this work. On their last album, 2013's “Columbia,” the quintet roamed dozens of shadowy spaces: the heroin-age alleys of New York and Berlin, the post-punk dives of Manchester, England, Seattle and Cambridge and outer space.
But this is a new landscape even for them.
This is what Pravda shines at, it's their little bit of pop genius: atmospheric dark music with a hook sharp enough to keep you happy despite a serious sense of unease.
Jackel comes off as a bad man, not to be trusted. But you're better off with him on the lonely, dangerous road than with those fortune tellers and the cons that bugged the CB radio.
Wait, is this a Western?
Take a listen. Take a couple listens. Spend an hour with it, an afternoon with it. So much to be heard in just two and a half minutes.
- Jed Gottlieb, Boston Herald, 6/10/2015
This is dark. Real dark. I didn’t expect this from The Daily Pravda. “Country & Western” tosses and turns in the night, never letting you get comfortable. “There’s terror waiting in the wing.” Indeed, there is. It slinks and slithers through the saxophone sleaze, Ruby Rose Fox wails and electronic shrieks. Don’t let the mid-song lullaby fool you. There’s no happy ending here. That would be too predictable. Who would want that?
- Daykampmusic.com, 6/30/2015