Saddle Creek | The Good Life | Reviews


Album of the Year

Author: Simone Jung
09/08/2004 | | | Album Review
Once upon a time, a fairly new band named The Good Life swept the indie scene with a burst of music that was a deadly concoction mixed of sorrow, love, and three parts vodka. [Please drink responsibly and preferably not after breaking up with a loved one.] Having developed a fine underground fan base with his band Cursive, Tim Kasher and his crew of sulking broken hearts create another album to add to the Saddle Creek collection. The Good Life's latest album Album of the Year must be the most appropriate name sharing intimate stories between the narrator and a lost love.

Kasher uses his expert lyricism and blends it together with a folk sound. Using a mix of acoustic guitar, electric guitar, piano and barely audible drums; The Good Life brings life back to nights of contemplation. Kasher's songs are more like short stories expressed severely hurt. Mainly writing about harsh break-ups or seeing an ex-girlfriend from high school at the local Starbucks, the Good Life keeps true to their old familiar sound while portraying life affirming love stories.

The first song off this 12-tracker depicts a long-term relationship within three minutes. From the first time they meet (in a girls' bathroom) to the day she moves out. Kasher brilliantly plays a steady folk guitar in the background with a little twang of electric guitar; and by the end of the song, a steady drumming of a bongo and snare. The beat picks up and then it's full-on Kasher magic. Still, the lyrics are deep as tears fill your eyes. The Good Life directs your senses to another point in time as well as place. They have redesigned the meaning of story telling. We sit in front of an open fire and roast marshmallows while Kasher converts the fire into lime light. He changes "kumbayah" into songs like "You're Not You" or "Inmate."

In the song "Notes in His Pockets," Kasher describes a love affair outside of the relationship. With quick timing lyrics and the pouncing of the drums creates panic within this delicately written song. Adding out of tune chords from the piano, The Good Life demonstrates an act of adultery which is overlooked sometimes in relationships ... an old girlfriend can meet you in the future and rekindle the flame that once was shared between each other. Painful and true, Kasher is quick to the draw with his song "Night and Day." Another slow ballad with appreciation for the little details of life. Like "cuts on her legs," the Good Life will leave an open scar on your soul and keep you sedated for hours.

At least you get to hang out by the campfire.

Album of the Year

Album of the Year

LP / CD / Deluxe CD / MP3