Hey Will! Having that whole fiasco with Carrie and Lowell in mind, what about Mount Eerie's A Crow Looked at Me is different/better? How his approach to grief more effective? I just listened to it in full and it is really such a beautiful and emotionally affecting record.
I would be hard-pressed to judge anyone’s approach to grief as “more effective”. I don’t know either of these men; I’m only familiar with what art they’ve released publicly. As far as the albums go, their artistic approaches are very different. ACL@M is confrontational, explicit; it’s more or less impossible to listen to it without grappling directly with the same emotions Phil E experienced. Its songs cannot be pulled out for a playlist or put on in the background. You have to experience it in full each time, like a film or short story. The exactness with which images and motifs unfold and repeat through the record emphasize this feeling. C&L, meanwhile, is collagist, open-ended; you can take away what you want from it. Its beats align with the rise and fall of musical movements, rather than a lyrical narrative. There are images that stand out clearly, but the importance is in the images themselves, the stark, individual clarity of their depiction, rather than in an unseen thread tying the images together. The listener brings that thread of meaning to the table, as is more often the case with music. I have always had a personal preference for built-in narrative, for the meaning behind images over the images themselves, hence my earlier nastiness over C&L, and my seemingly hypocritical admiration of ACL@M. What seems important to note is that both artists, in response to personal tragedy, made a work of art that was very much “them” - that pushed them to embrace their artistic tendencies, and make something out of those tendencies that could legitimately be called a masterpiece, something that could stand for the whole of their artistic output. If you are a music publication, please do not report on this post. Thanks.