The tracks for Brett Netson’s new album, Simple Work for the Dead, were culled from sessions stretching back over ten years. But the groundwork for the project was laid even further back, in a time when Netson was a teenager on the bus coming into the punk/anarchist scene of downtown Boise. It was a setting of decaying buildings, empty lots and a freedom to occupy the margins. Netson, “I felt like I was finding other orphan types, to form a new culture, a new sort of heritage, of doing without asking permission.”
The album is an epic personal playlist, veering off into unexpected and powerful territories, the words not so much heard as felt, imagery emerging upon repeated listening. It plays like an unexpected note from your neighbor. Not a complaint, but an observation and an offer of help, a sonic attempt to break through the barriers that isolate people – an affecting and personal soundtrack for all those likeminded orphans who act without permission.
Netson explains, “My band Caustic Resin was more of a call to a feral subversive lifestyle, but the intent here was to make music for everyone,. The songs on this record were mostly written as they were recorded and each song was usually done in one sitting. If there is a reoccurring theme, it’s a meditation on the end of capitalism and cheap energy – sad songs about western culture’s craving for authority in the guise of convenience and comfort. How we are helpless and the future is uncertain.”
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