Exposé print issues (1993-2011)
Cheer-Accident — Here Comes the Sunset
(Skin Graft GR146, 2022, CD / LP / DL)
by Jon Davis, Published 2022-07-22
One thing you can consistently say about Cheer-Accident is that you can never say anything consistently about Cheer-Accident — unless it’s about their tendency towards perpetual change. Here Comes the Sunset is their 24th studio album, and it presents a mature band that is still sounding fresh and trying new things. And just being their own weird selves. Those who have seen the band play live in the last few years might recognize some of the material, as the credits say the album was recorded “mostly in the teens of the 21st Century,” but the album’s lack of coherence is pretty much par for the course with Cheer-Accident. Personnel varies among the six tracks, and Thymme Jones (drums, vocals, keyboards, trumpet) is the only musician who appears on all tracks. Co-founder Jeff Libersher (guitar) is on the majority of the album, as is bassist Dante Kester; Amelie Morgan (keyboards, oboe) is on board for three tracks, and vocalist Carmen Armillas features on two. Aside from that, various others appear on a single track each: Cory Bengtsen (bari sax), Erin Casey (flute), Mike Hagedorn (trombone), Sophia Uddin (violin), and Julie Pomerleau (violin, viola). The opening track is called “Star Vehicle (4 Flats),” and it’s a crashing succession of unpredictable accents and odd noises that eventually settles into a sort of groove with a quirky vocal line and stabbing notes from bari sax and trumpet. “Maison de Velours Écureuil” is practically a solo effort from Jones, though you’d never know it from the sound. It’s an instrumental built on a catchy drum part and various keyboards augmented by strings. Then we get a cover of the Cheap Trick classic “Dream Police,” which may seem an unusual choice, but the band makes it their own, taking that weird little riff at the end of the song and extending it into several minutes of impressive meter-changing unison work. Jones and Armillas share lead vocal duties, further distancing this version from the original. At six minutes, it’s a fun mini-epic. The title track is another unpredictable thing, starting with a couple minutes of ambient rumbling noise before launching into a song that could pass for a Robert Wyatt ballad. All the tracks are good, and my only complaint is that at 29 minutes, it’s pretty short even for a vinyl LP. But I’d rather have 29 minutes of Cheer-Accident music than 79 minutes from most other bands, so I guess it’s OK.
Related artist(s): Cheer-Accident
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