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Teens Of Denial
Car Seat Headrest
- Release Date 08 July 2016
- In Stock
- Product code
- Double Vinyl LP
Includes Download Code
Matador Records announce the release of Car Seat Headrest’s ‘Teens Of Denial’, the thirteenth album in Car Seat Headrest’s (aka 23-year-old Will Toledo) oeuvre, second on Matador and first to be recorded in a proper studio with a full band and producer (Steve Fisk).
On ‘Teens Of Denial’, Toledo moves from bedroom pop to something approaching classic-rock grandeur and huge (if detailed and personal) narrative ambitions, with nods to The Cars, Pavement, Jonathan Richman, Wire and William Onyeabor.
By turns tender and caustic, empathetic and solipsistic, literary and vernacular, profound and profane, self-loathing and self-aggrandizing, he conjures a specifically 21st Century mindset, a product of information overload, the loneliness it can foster and the escape music can provide.
‘Fill In The Blank’, the mission statement of the album, kicks things off - it’s a fist-pumping anthem about feeling lousy in an ill-defined way, the fear of settling into a routine of futility and not wanting to deal with it. Although it’s oddly joyful sounding, Toledo considers it the introduction to his angriest record yet. In that vein, ‘Vincent’, ‘Hippie Powers’ and ‘Connect The Dots’ are about both fighting to hold your place in the crowd and to hold your drink, as well as DIY college house shows and having no one to dance with, respectively. Initially similar, ‘Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales’ veers off in surprising directions, each piece flush with catchy, irony-free hooks.
At the heart of the album sits the 11:32 ‘Ballad Of The Costa Concordia’, which has more musical ideas than most whole albums (and at that length, it uses them all). Horns, keyboards, and elegant instrumental interludes set off art-garage moments; vivid vocal harmonies follow punk frenzy. The selfish captain of the capsized cruise liner in the Mediterranean in 2013 becomes a metaphor for struggles of the individual in society, as experienced by one hungover young man on the verge of adulthood.
‘Teens Of Denial’ refracts Toledo’s particular, personal story of one difficult year through cultural touchstones such as the biography of Frank Sinatra, the evolution of the Me Generation as seen in ‘Mad Men’ and elsewhere, plus elements of Eastern and Western theology. The whole thing flaunts a kind of conceptual, lyrical and musical ambition that has been missing from far too much 21st Century music.
1. Fill In The Blank
3. Destroyed By Hippie Powers
4. (Joe Gets Kicked Out Of School For Using) Drugs With Friends (But Says This Isn’t A Problem)
5. Just What I Needed/Not Just What I Needed
6. Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales
7. 1937 State Park
8. Unforgiving Girl (She's Not An)
9. Cosmic Hero
10. The Ballad Of The Costa Concordia
11. Connect The Dots (The Saga Of Frank Sinatra)
12. Joe Goes To School