A Place to Bury Strangers, ‘And I’m Up’ – Song Review
Fuzz War. Apocalypse. Supersonic Fuzz Gun. Total Sonic Annihilation. All are names of offerings from A Place to Bury Strangers frontman Oliver Ackerman’s line of homemade guitar effects pedals that he crafts under the Death by Audio tag, but none of those tinnitus inducers likely turn up on ‘And I’m Up,’ the second single from the forthcoming APTBS album ‘Worship.’ In fact, the so-called “Loudest Band in New York” actually inch the volume down a little bit on the tune, trading in their trademark My Bloody Valentine-like Wall of Sound sonic assault for something in the way of pop-induced restraint.
The Strangers are no strangers to the pop aesthetic. Their last full-length, 2009′s ‘Exploding Head,’ took plenty of detours down darkly melodic corridors, and the fuzzed-out jangle of bands like the Jesus and Mary Chain and the Velvet Underground have long been a touchstone.
But rarely have they embraced it as wholeheartedly as they do on ‘And I’m Up,’ which takes reverb-laden surf riff and turns it into, as Ackerman himself says, “that classic ’50s vibe our parents grew up loving oh so much and then cramming down our throats through subliminal early life listening.”
But don’t let the title or the hum-able melody fool you — ‘And I’m Up’ is a total downer. A Place to Bury Strangers have always lurked in the shadows cast by shadows, and Ackerman’s lyrics on ‘Up’ don’t bring any sort of brightness to an otherwise dreary day. “Either way I choose the choice is wrong / So I’ll choose wrong / Always choose wrong,” Ackerman sings in the chorus, seemingly giving in to a doomed existence more so than embracing any sort of lifestyle choice.
‘Worship,’ A Place to Bury Strangers’ third album, drops on June 26 and will be supported by a lengthy summer trek that will include club dates on the West Coast, through the Midwest and along the East Coast. They are also booked to play the Metallica-curated Orion Festival in Atlantic City, N.J. on June 24 alongside Arctic Monkeys, Modest Mouse and many others. Check out their complete itinerary here.
Listen to A Place to Bury Strangers’ ‘And I’m Up’