I stumbled upon this artist completely by accident. I had been meaning to buy something from Jack White's Third Man Records for quite some time now. Finally I had a little extra cash come my way and I picked up the new Jack White, a single of his from the movie "It Might Get Loud" and I wanted to pick up a live record from the Live at Third Man series. I randomly picked Pujol. What an awesome experience hearing this 6 song live EP that they put out. I immediately started to research this young artist who was kicking some live ass and taking names. I noted that he had just released a new full length album. I went to my local record store to pick up a copy. I could not find it. I went to the other local record store and thank the lord all mighty they had one copy of United States of Being.
Upon first listen my impression was that the live tracks had more intensity. Way more intensity. But I began to look deeper into the tunes. Pujol is a poet. There is no other word to describe what ink flows out of his pen. The compilation of these songs are ones that come from the heart. The word play is witty and the furthest thing from boring. Songs today tend to be trite and redundant and just plain boring. This description runs the gamut from emo love songs to hardcore punk rock to danceceterra rap music. The same old thing that is pumped through our systems; hashed and rehashed up like an old sack of potatoes. The closest thing that one may get to something that is real would be some of the modern folk artists (like Conor Oberst, et al..) or a an underground veteran for the last 25 yrs, like Jeff Tweedy. Still, I like to rock. Bright Eyes or Mumford and Sons don't rock. Wilco may rock 20% of the time. This new album by Pujol plain and simply rocks. It has a certain energy within it that makes me want to go out and see this band live. I love that. Now let's get down to dissecting a little bit of this album. It is not all perfect but a worthy acquisition.
DIY2K- starts off the album. It is an anthem. It will get your toes tapping and your hands clapping. It makes you want to sing a long. But read along to the album with the lyrics because this songs lets you know what you are about to be in store for. Mission From God- This song is where Pujol really rips apart his ribcage and shows you the soul buried deep inside. It is just a brilliant number that has a toe tapping energy that makes me want to smile. And isn't that what music and art is all about? Expression. Providence- I did not particularly care for this song on the first listen (which happened to be a live solo acoustic version I found on youtube). But after several listens to the produced version on the album I see it comes to sit in the third position out of the gate. It is really radio friendly. A lot of this album (and especially his live recorded performances) has a raw garage rock, punk attitude feel about them. This can get airplay on mainline stations and probably could appeal to a more mainstream audience. It is growing on me. Keeper of Atlantis- Ah, an ode to Dad. That is how this song comes screaming out of the gates at me. A beautifully written nod to the lessons and stories handed down to one generation to the next. And either you can relate to it or hate it. Either way it is true emotion. Made of Money- Irony. Not my favorite track on the album, but catchy enough. Endless Mike- Oh shit! Now we are getting deep into the good stuff. This song kicks ass. The funny thing is that it totally threw me for a loop on the first listen. See, it is the first cut on the live EP I purchased from Thirdman. In other words, the live version was my full and uninvited introduction into Pujol. It blew my mind. I'd buy that record all over again for that track alone. -This one is slowed down, more melodically driven and well produced that only adds to the emotion of the song. As Endless Mike led off the heart of the line next up comes probably my favorite song on the album, Reverse Vampire. Such a great chanting tune with remarkable musicianship put on by all musicians. But the what makes this catchy little tune particulary good is the poetry that has been turned into lyrics. It starts off:
When I look around
And what I see is not the best
But it's good enough for me
right here right now
It's sort of boring
I got a million ways
To occupy my mind
And waste my time
Either way, Please come west. I am 100% positive that the live Pujol show will be worth the price of admission and merit this artist a long and successful career.
Black Rabbit Official Music Video directed by Steward Copeland
The United States of being is Daniel Pujol's decree to the listening world. At this time in his life and maybe for all of enternity, it is what he believes in...so much he had the instructions tattooed onto his rib cage and proudly posted it as the album cover for all the world to see.