Death Blues: Non-Fiction

Death Blues: Non-Fiction

(SIGE, 7/1/14)

"Are"

Jon Mueller, percussionist for Volcano Choir, originally conceived of Death Blues while visiting a post-Katrina New Orleans, its residents unconcerned, celebrating the moment. That concept has grown and become a narrative, exploring, through rock and drone, a new theme with each record. Non-Fiction, the latest, occupies a reality of its own choosing.

The first of the two tracks, “Are,” begins with low drumming and sinister strings, slowly adding wordless vocals and extended echoes. A meditative drone, before suddenly breaking, the percussion and vocals morph to resemble the nonsense words of Leftfield’s classic “Afro-Left.”

“Do” is more traditionally rock, taking the white noise and drone of the previous track’s climax and stripping back to a single beat and chanted vocals. Mueller adds new sounds slowly, with the end result reading religiously, like a ceremonial dance witnessed by an outsider.