Pernice Brothers – Goodbye, Killer

June 16, 2010

“Goodbye, Killer” presents the strongest set of songs recorded yet by Joe Pernice. Blasting through ten tracks — and not a bad one to be found among them — in just over 30 minutes, Joe and Bob Pernice, Ric Menck, and James Walbourne do without the bells and whistles, literally and metaphorically, and prove once again how less can be more.

Plus there is, as always, the poetry of the lyrics. Whether he’s singing about the beginning, as in “Jacqueline Susann” (which you can download from the Pernice Brothers’ website), the beginning of the end, as in “Something for You,” or the end, as on, actually, most of the other tracks, Pernice captures the essence of a comically/tragically horrible situation like no one else can.

The girl in “Jacqueline Susann” reads Ford Madox Ford, too, so it seems fitting to close with this quote, from “The Gold Solider,” though it could just have easily come from Joe Pernice himself:

She asked him perpetually what he wanted. What did he want? What did he want? And all he ever answered was: “I have told you” … But just once he tripped up. To Leonora’s eternal question he answered that all he desired in life was that–that he could pick himself together again and go on with his daily occupations if–the girl, being five thousand miles away, would continue to love him. He wanted nothing more; he prayed his God for nothing more. Well, he was a sentimentalist.

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