Monday, December 14, 2009

Psykids Army

Originally Posted at December 9, 2009

I’m beginning today’s blog entry with a friendly disclaimer: 
I have two 6-month-old Boston Terrier puppies who are the cutest, most playful, loving, smart, cuddly (blech... enough already) creatures on the planet, who also like to bark at the wind, shadows, the furnace, lint... Well, last night they did this from about midnight until, well, right about now - which is roughly 7:06 am.  So I’ve had zero sleep and my mind is a bit sluggish.  So I’ll do my best to be coherent and insightful and to do justice to this morning’s topic - not the easiest of tasks on my good days.

So this morning we have another unsigned artist I found on MySpace a few days back called Psykids Army (aka Ryan Wirth).  Here is yet one more instance where I find myself questioning the malignancy of the gods when it comes to who does and does not get access to recording contracts.  I mean, there are so many major and indie label acts out there generating gobs of just absolute crap and yet time and again I find myself listening to artists such as Mr. Wirth who are producing some really sophisticated and wonderful music - you know, the sort of music that might edify rather than drive one to drink a forty and put a cap somewhere or another.

I hate to gush and all that, but I absolutely love the Psykid sound and I  think Wirth is an amazing composer and musician.  He describes his style as “moving photography.”  I’m not certain if he is referring here to a conceptual motility of fixed images or to the poignancy of such (perhaps both/and?).  His songs are moody, melodic, languorous daydreams.  His voice, a breathier, somewhat less angst-ridden reminder of Conor Oberst, floats atop lush layers of soft, clean guitars (a bit David Gilmore here, a bit  Buckethead there [I’m thinking Colma and Electric Tears]), glowing synthesizers and industrial percussion. And yet there are moments, particularly within the song “Confusion is Always There,” when I am, strangely enough, reminded of Sonic Youth, even though most of the song is acoustic.      

The narrative arc of Wirth’s current song collection, Story, is reminiscent of Doves (particularly The Last Broadcast), with each song supporting the others thematically.  Story is present in its entirety at his MySpace site and available for free download.  I hope he gets this out into the paying marketplace soon - he’s clearly put his heart and soul into it and deserves some remuneration.  

I wish I had some biographical info on Wirth, but, like so many of us unsigned types, who’s only real selling point is the mystique of our own obscurity, he provides few if any personal details on his MySpace page (nor could I find other online sources for such information).

OK, my work is done here... off to nap now.


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