As I continue thinking about some of my favorite music from this decade, I started thinking about music from the 1990’s that remains on my “constants” list. There are not many bands from that decade (or any decade, for that matter) who stay on my main ITunes playlist ALL THE TIME. But I can say that Palace’s “Viva Last Blues” album has remained there steadfastly since I first got an Ipod way back when. I will rotate songs from that album on and off the IPod from time to time, but there has never, ever been a time where there hasn’t been a song from this album on my playlist. That says a lot.
Palace is, without question, an acquired taste. It is quite mellow. Some people just can’t get by the voice and that’s understandable, given it is warbling and teetering on the verge of…..something. Freddie Mercury he is not. But the music has such warmth and the lyrics are so interesting and the songs just…..stay. They stay. Every song on the album, for me, is like an old sweatshirt, except it doesn’t get weathered and it never sounds aged. What I love about this album is that you can slip it by your mainstream friends easily. For example, I have a few songs from Viva Last Blues on our “mellow” playlist, which we typically trot out when we have guests over or whatnot. And it fits! It fits right in there with the mellow Jack Johnson stuff and the Neil Young “Harvest” era songs and the Mazzy Star, etc etc. But when you listen to it separately, you think this is just some guy who needs to practice more.
Whatever. I’m not good as descriptions, so I’ll let the music do it. Here’s “The Brute Choir,” from one of my absolute favorite 1990’s album, Viva Last Blues.[audio:brute.mp3]