Lower Case EP by Bill Mallonee

posted in: Music Review, October 2008 | 0

lower-case-epBILL MALLONEE
LOWER CASE MINI EP

2008 Independent
Purchase: billmallonee.net
Review by: Steve Ruff

This mini E.P. is just what it says, mini… but this disc packs a serious punch and is one of the best things to come down the music slide this year. The three songs that grace this disc, available as a download only from billmallonee.net, are “Sober Up”, “String Of Pearls” and “Sad Parade”. This is Bill at his best, backed by a full band and his wife Muriah on piano and vocals.

All three of these songs were previously only available on BillTunes, his monthly subscription service that comes out at a furious pace of 5 new songs every month. The cool thing is that with the subscription you get these songs in a more ‘demo’ form, and with Lower Case you get to hear them upon completion with the band.  Everything is here in abundance, the multi-layering guitars and string arrangements are top notch. Muriah’s vocals are beautiful and lend a very heartfelt, almost haunting, quality that blend well with the songs that are what I love most about Bill’s music… introspective, intuitive and sometimes heart-breaking.

Bill’s ability to write lyrics that rival Dylan are here as well. Check out these lyrics to “Sad Parade” which was his tip of the hat to Robyn Hitchcock:

“Yeah, and I am sitting in this room, On every hill there is a fool
And my conscience, it’s the lurking shadow, Of a hangman that I haven’t met
A lovely uniformed cadet, Those killing fields never lying fallow”

Bill’s music is one of the most overlooked works of art for the past twenty years. Always a ‘critic’s darling’ band with Vigilantes of Love, and now solo for the last several years, commercial success has been elusive and unkind. Bill writes, in my opinion, the best Americana music that is out there. This is the real deal, so get online and check out billmallonee.net where you can follow the link in the upper right corner to the digital downloads page where Lower Case can be found at a reasonable price.

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