There are certain songs that catch you off guard, spilling over with your secrets. How can the world hear these songs if they reveal the truths you hold inside? But then you realize, a stranger wrote these songs and you're merely feeling an intense connection to the words. After that moment of panic, you become comfortable to merely pretend. You can pretend that these songs are sending your secret messages into the universe letting those who matter know how you truly feel, and though they might be worlds away, they are hearing you. It also works in the reverse, sometimes you can receive the secrets of others just by listening. Red Devil Dawn is one of these magic albums.
Crooked Fingers is the solo project of ex-Archers of Loaf frontman Eric Bachmann, it follows his stint as an instrumental artist under the name Barry Black.
Red Devil Dawn is the 3rd album Bachmann has released under the Crooked Fingers name and the first to feature complex arrangements including strings and horns.
Bachmann is often compared to Tom Waits, as both of their voices share that standout rasp. Musically, Crooked Fingers is less of a carnival ride than Waits offers. There is a strong Americana sound verging nearly into Alt-Country.
But really, this sounds like a series of urgent transmissions.
And now, I'm going to get down to decoding some of these messages:
"Don't Say a Word" - Someone is telling you that even if you've learned from what you've been through, it doesn't mean that you're going to find the one you lost when you made your mistakes.
"You Can Never Leave" - This is someone saying "Oops, 'the love we made was no lie' but I'm retarded and totally let you go. 'I can't get you back' and now that I'm getting older I realize that was a big mistake. By the way 'when you dance it is torture', by which I mean to say that seeing you live your life is killing me, so maybe we can meet again someday but if we don't stay together then, I guess that makes us liars."
"You Threw a Spark" - Someone is mad at you because you claimed that you loved them so much but you didn't do anything about it. And then you had the nerve to blame them for not coming to rescue you from your little world when all along you were the one who failed to act.
"Boy With (100) Hands" - Now they're telling you that they tried to rescue you. They saw that you are "better than the world you live in" but even if they had 100 hands, they couldn't help you, but they'll hold you in their heart and try to move on.
"Sweet Marie" - The message here is that if maybe you didn't have to choose, maybe if the choice could be made for you, maybe then things would work out.
If decoding the rest of these messages sounds like something you'd be into, you should pick this album up. It's there, it's waiting, do it.
Hear it HERE.