October 27, 2007

Logorrhea, Pathos and Superman Revenge Squad

In March, when writing about Meneguar, we broke the hard news to you that Meneguar was both better than your band and better than your favorite band. On this rainy Saturday we are going to tell you to just hang it up altogether. Superman Revenge Squad's Ben Parker is a better songwriter than you and just about anyone, so there's little point in soldiering on with dreams of recording for a mid-sized indie. It is with surprising frequency that Mr. Parker lands a lyric that is excoriatingly personal and pointedly universal in its impact. "Gonna ride around this city on the circle line, going round and round and back again until you feel OK," he plots during the resolution of his song "Women Hating Internet Pornography." Mr. Parker, the man behind the defunct bands Tempertwig and Nosferatu D2 (bands we wrote about here and here respectively), writes remarkable, wordy songs so intense and with sentiments rendered so diamond-hard that the songs seem poised to explode under their own volatile pressure.

Wordier than Morrissey, and dedicated more to emotional impact than rhyming convention and meter, Parker's progression over the years is notable for a steady reduction: Tempertwig was a power trio, Nosferatu D2 a duo, and now, with Superman Revenge Squad, it is just Parker and acousic guitar. And while our inner rock fan is thrilled by the power and release of the Tempertwig recordings and the explosive drumming that punctuates Nosferatu D2's tunes, the dramatic intensity of Parker's current stripped-down incarnation is undeniable. None of this would be the case if it weren't for the astonishing songwriting and lyricism. Superman Revenge Squad songs are bitter and confessional-sounding. If not semi-autobiographical, the songs certainly reference continually Parker's surroundings and fixation with pop music. And of course, in Parker's music romance never goes right: "With just three bullets in a gun, I could bring down the houses of Parliament, but I could never bring back your love." Superman Revenge Squad's hometown gig this past Tuesday was recorded and the songs are posted for free download here. The recordings are excellent and we recommend you acquire them all. Here are two to get you started.

Superman Revenge Squad -- "Been A Private Detective For 17 Months" -- Live At The Green Dragon 10/23/07
Superman Revenge Squad -- "Funny Thing You Said" -- Live At The Green Dragon 10/23/07
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