Probably the most impressive thing about Eleventh Dream Day’s second album for
Atlantic (third album,
overall) is how little it did to remove itself from the raw passion of the
previous record, Beet. It seems hard
to believe that the major label was pleased with the sales results of Beet, in fact, you could even imagine the folks at the record label offering a more accessible vision, one that includes huge
bags of sweeteners and infectious candy coatings.
Instead, Lived To Tell was recorded in a fucking tobacco barn, and you can almost hear the dusty floor stirring up from the ruckus that Janet Bean makes with her questionable timekeeping, never mind the air that’s getting pushed around from guitarist Baird Figi and Rick Rizzo.
Rizzo also serves as Eleventh Dream Day’s primary mouthpiece, with Bean herself providing some additional color with backing vocals.
From her noticeably rushed intro to album opener “Rose Of Jericho,” you’ll easily forgive her sloppy beginnings when you hear the twin cacophony that Figi and Rizzo unleashed upon their entrance to the song. With a nice dual fret-war underway, it becomes understandable why Bean wanted to get the rumble underway, tout de suite.
Looser and louder than its predecessor, Lived To Tell finds Figi branching out with some incredible slide guitar word that just pops out of the right channel.
Speaking of, the entire record is mixed with the guitars way out in front, Rizzo and Bean’s vocals struggle to be heard while Janet’s snare drum cuts through everything. What actually pushes the song forward alternates between her high-hat or her bass drum, causing the entire arrangement to sound like it could topple over in its own excitement at any moment. The band simply sound like they cannot wait to rock your fucking balls off.
And they do.