Slim Cessna’s Auto Club comes from the amazingly incestuous Denver country music scene. The only real constant in the band has been Slim Cessna himself, but Jay Munly has served as a pretty key member over time. SCAC writes big songs, I don’t really know how else to describe it. They aren’t heavy, they aren’t loud, and they’re rarely disposable. They are often labeled as “gothic country” due to the intermingling of Old Testament and apocalyptic religion with bad relationships, alcohol, and murder. If nothing else, SCAC is, IMO, one of the best bands in America that hardly any one’s heard of, and they just released what might be the best album of the year in Cipher.
Cipher is woven together by four hymnal refrains entitled “An Introduction to the Power of Braces”, with each focusing on a different part of the person, Arms, Legs, Teeth and Faith respectively. They seem to loosely divide the album into four themed sections, but I have not been able to get a clear grip on that yet. Between that and the hidden messages in the album’s artwork, one can see how appropriate the title is. The album, thematically, is a lot darker than their previous efforts, but still features their signature harmonies, Cessna/Munly vocal push-pulls, as well as an unrivaled level of musicianship.
Do yourself a favor and check out this album, it’s the most essential listening album of the year thus far.
Slim Cessna’s Auto Club’s Official Site, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club on myspace, Buy Cipher
EDIT: I found a video of the band performing Magalina Hagalina way back in 2006. Enjoy: