There is a certain darkness lurking in the corner of every Christ, Lord song. Even at its most blithe and whimsical, you can’t help but feel something maudlin hiding behind all those gypsy stomps and vaudevillian flair-ups. Call it a matter of aesthetics. For all their gifts for melody and storytelling, it’s difficult not to define the group by their medieval quirks and musical eccentricities, which often border on the baroque. A lot of bands paint pictures with their sounds; Christ, Lord tend to emphasize the shadows against the light, creating a compositional chiaroscuro effect that lures you into the center of their songs.
The band is currently working on a pair of releases, the first being a live 12″ recorded for Criminal Records’ new “Live at Criminal Records” series that is due out on April 20th, otherwise known as Record Store Day. The second release is the group’s next, yet-to-be-named studio effort from which the track below is pulled. Tentatively titled “Cats Cats Cats,” the song finds the band stripping away some of their more stylistic accoutrements and settling into a mysterious mid-tempo lurch punctuated by flashes of fiddle, lunging accordions, brassy trumpet blasts and Christian Ballew’s plaintive vocals. I wouldn’t call it menacing, but there’s definitely a hint of something sinister in the track’s portentous groove, which would naturally make anyone think of, well, what else but—cats. As in kitty cats. Makes perfect sense, right?
I bring this up only because the band wants to make a video. Specifically they want to make a video with cats. Lots of cats. And, if you’re game, your kitty can be a part of all the fun. Via their Bandcamp page, the group has asked fans to email them up to three clips of their beloved felines so that the group can compile the footage into something magical. The only rules are that the clips be 20 seconds or less and that the email include the name of the cat(s) and permission to use them in the video. Sounds easy enough. What will become of the clips is anyone’s guess, but you can count me in as curious.
Give a listen to “Cats Cats Cats” below and then head over to the group’s Bandcamp page where you can download the track for any price you choose.