Sunday, May 12, 2013

Eleventh Dream Day - New Moodio

El Moodio is where I dropped off from Eleventh Dream Day, a harsh sentence considering how fucking great Beet and Lived To Tell were/are. It was here that Atlantic Records took their little powerhouse of a band from Chicago and gave them the royal “fuck you” treatment, but not before giving them one final glimpse of hope.

That hope came in the form of “demonstrating” to the band that the major label did want to continue releasing their records. They did this by suggesting that the band go back and re-record the songs they just did with producer Brad Wood-this time with a better-known producer and in a bigger budgeted studio.

The subsequent record was called El Moodio and Atlantic Records celebrated the release of this record by promptly dropping them from the label.

Then someone on the internets was talking to someone else on the internets and one of them goes “I wonder whatever happened to that original version of El Moodio, the one that was cheaply recorded with Brad Wood one weekend in a rush.

And thus, New Moodio was born.

New Moodio is indeed blunter and a bit freer sounding than its more recognized brother, and by that feat alone should be worthy of at least a half-star improvement over it.

But the songs or the way they were recorded was never El/New Moodio’s downshift from Lived To Tell.

The issue was the departure of guitarist Baird Figi, who left the band after the initial supporting dates for L.T.T.

Quick side note: I met Figi very briefly before an Eleventh Dream Day show during the Beet tour. He looked miserable and he excused himself for wearing hearing protection while I interrogated him under the influence of psilocybin mushrooms. “The amps have just been killing my ears the last few weeks.” He explained.
A few minutes later, I found out why this band was so respected on stage, and I discovered the brutal force of the hearing-destroying capabilities of the Rizzo/Figi guitar exploits.

They are not found on New Moodio or its predecessor.  Instead of a good rock and roll band with an incredible dual-guitarist attack, Eleventh Dream Day turned into just another good rock and roll band.
Subsequent albums always suffered from this same ailment, and not to belabor the point, but Eleventh Dream Day’s twin guitar assault is the reason why people like me are still trying to get people like you to pay attention to them.

So if this nicely appointed re-issue of Eleventh Dream Day’s “lost album” gets you to pay attention for a moment-and then have you consider any one of their first three (and more superior) records, then New Moodio has made this discovery even better the second time around.

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