Touche Amore/The Casket Lottery - Split
Record Label: No Sleep Records
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Bands make splits for many different reasons. For Touche Amore and The Casket Lottery, consider it a weird mix of fate and personal achievement. As the story goes, Touche Amore sought out Ed Rose to record their last full-length Parting the Sea Between Brightness and Me because, well, he in particular produced The Casket Lottery’s records back in the day – that’s the super condensed version. In any case, the two meet here for two-track outputs on each side, with each putting a new track and a cover on wax to create something that sprawls sonically while reminding us of each band’s power and tenacity. But for only being four tracks, this split captures a pretty admirable range of emotion through energy and inspiration, serving not only as a proposed link in a chain but as a bridge sonically between the four bands credited with writing the original tracks.
Touche’s side cuts first with “Whale Belly”, a continuation of sound from Parting’s cathartic vibe that sways and bursts with percussion and buzzing guitars. It’s a strong enough track that it’s already making its way into their live set, and rightfully so. Their version of The Replacements’ “Unsatisfied” rings a bit brighter though, as it somehow captures TA’s blistering passion lyrically while toning things back a bit musically. Jeremy Bolm and company handle the hooks and less frantic songwriting well though, all without watering down the track or their delivery in the process.
The flip brings up The Casket Lottery’s new track “White Lies”, slowing down the tempo a bit and bringing a rather haunting mood through brooding melodies and off-the-beaten path drumming. The crunching chorus aches of emotion while dragging us into a sea of vocals and colossal guitars, only stirring the pot more for the anticipation of a new Casket Lottery record in the coming months. Their cover of Beach House’s “Myth” is the wild card of the bunch though, as the band’s weaving melodies translate the mystical, yet driving nature of the original. They find a way to make it work though, making a surreal landscape of swirling guitars and wispy vocals that stays a bit more true to the original across the board – as opposed to making a complete re-interpretation of it.
While truly just a taste of something new – and a treat to go alongside it – this split is strong through four tracks that run the gamut of blistering to buoyant without totally losing us in the process. Both Touche Amore and The Casket Lottery prove their ability on their original cuts, while both take interesting cover choices and make the best of them to boot. Even if you’re not quite familiar with The Casket Lottery or you’re just looking for more from Touche Amore, this split is one you’ll have a tough time not putting on repeat.