Help Wanted Nights
Superficially, Help Wanted Nights is light, rockish folk. Occasionally, an out-of-tune piano or guitar is thrown in to throw a song slightly off-kilter. The album's biggest strength is the juxtaposition of venomous sentiments delivered evenly, over popish, catchy backgrounds. The song "Heartbroke" is a bitter, sarcastic jab at an ex, but has the vaguely sunny detachment of a love song. "Keely Amiee" is an up-tempo song simultaneously about adoring somebody and being disappointed with your life; it's more or less a motivational talk, but it includes lines like "I love your suffering/ like gravity loves a stumbling drunk." (Um, swoon.) "Your Share of Men" is grandiose and buzzy, and the end of "Best Night" spirals into operatic excess for a few glorious seconds before the song ends. Hints of intensity and drama occasionally surface in this album, but overall, it keeps its suffering tightly under wraps. There's an intentional disconnect between the sound and the point, and that creates an interesting pull on a listener.
Help Wanted Nights is a tight, enjoyable album. It doesn't go for the jugular, but it doesn't have to. Let Cursive stab you repeatedly in the stomach; that's not The Good Life's style. The Good Life prefers the passive-aggressive approach, and, in the end, it pays off in an album that is both catchy and heartbreaking.
LP / Deluxe LP / CD / MP3
LP / CD / Deluxe CD / MP3