Murder By Death
"In Bocca Al Lupo"

(Tent Show 2006)Murder By Death - In Bocca Al Lupo

Indiana quartet Murder By Death seamlessly blend folk with indie rock for a modern spin that sounds not only timeless and original but also smart. Full of strong melodies and rich, full instrumentation, Murder By Death's "In Bocca Al Lupo" has that something special that pulls you in. Perhaps it is the lyrics of murder or the images that will undoubtedly pop into your head of hipsters swing dancing to the music.

Murder By Death make their mark with the clean, clear melody that sings out on the memorable "Brother" among endlessly pattering drums and gritty guitar riffs. The band pays homage to Johnny Cash while working themselves into a frenzy on "Sometimes The Line Walks You." On "The Organ Grinder," the band offers a ghostly waltz while the swagger of "Boy Decide," backed by steady percussion, comes across strongly.

Bold, rich cello makes "One More Notch" stands out as the band slowly draws you in with the smooth, full melody and clicking castanets before "Dead Men And Sinners" swirls by with a cheeky chorus of carnival singers reminiscent to Tom Waits. Elsewhere on "In Bocca Al Lupo," Murder By Death decide to tread a quieter, darker path. "Dynamite Mine" lurks quietly before strongly making its mark with slow crescendos and the acoustic guitar-led "Shiola" suggests a gentler Cash. Murder By Death put a new, more remorseful spin on Nick Cave's "The Mercy Seat" with their "The Big Sleep."

Despite their dark themes, there is a definite optimism within Murder By Death's music. As the album fades out on the lightly repeated phrase of "there's still time to start again," all of Murder By Death's quick talking and memorable melodies come together. "In Bocca Al Lupo" is a whirlwind tour through Murder By Death's world. It is a trip well worth taking.

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