Saturday, March 17, 2007

Dan Higgs Ancestral Songs

Dan Higgs goes it alone on this disc. No Lungfish. Not quite as cryptic as his Jew's Harp record on Northern Liberties -a Dischord subsidiary, but fear not it makes appearances on this record. This record lives up to its title as the songs have a droning timeless quality that coupled with Higgs's lyrics makes you wonder if they are new songs or ones taken from some pagan forgotten past. Droning and hypnotic in a way that most psych or black metal bands could only wish for. This is what I wished Jandek would have sounded like....or any other performer tagged with the "cryptic loner" tag. Higgs has been crafting and creating his vision for decades going back to Reptile House in Baltimore in the early 80s. His meaning clear to him, but leaving most of us scratching our heads and happily creating our own interpretations. His lyrics like a mirror to reflect back your thoughts-making you own subliminal connection to his words. "The Christ" that keeps creeping up in his lyrics more and more makes me feel like his translating some missing desert gospel he found while walking the streets of Baltimore washed ashore from some sunken ship that never made it home. But it's not some lunatic vibe. Not some raving the "end is coming" character wailing in the streets and that kernel of sanity is what keeps people analyzing his lyrics and statements. Just because you don't understand doesn't mean he is crazy. At times the music is reminiscent of Amps for Christ-another man traveling the solo path of his vision. With no band with him, this is real DIY as he is doing the music,art, and lyrics himself. 6 tracks most over the 5 minute mark.

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