Weekly Download Vol. IV No. 5

In a Big City by Titus Andronicus (8.0)

You’ll hate this song, and you’ll hate this album. Just like you did Titus’ previous album The Monitor (Patrick Stickles’ break-up/where-is-my-life-going album set against a somehow apt Civil War backdrop), to which WD still listens monthly (if not weekly) and for which no single person I recommended it ever had anything good to say.

You’ll hate this album. Because you’ll hear Stickle’s painful punk warble on the very first line of the very first song vomit out the mouthful of “OK by now I think we’ve established that everything is inherently worthless and there’s nothing in the universe with any kind of objective purpose” and you’ll sigh, and you’ll think “this shit again. Come on, dude.”

You’ll hate this album, because it has songs titled “Upon Viewing Oregon’s Landscape With The Flood of Detritus” and “Titus Andronicus v. The Absurd Universe (3rd Round KO)” (N.B. Continuing their tradition of having at least one eponymous song on each albums “Titus Andonicus” from The Airing of Grievances and “Titus Andronicus Forever” from The Monitor.)

You’ll hate this album because even though they, if anything, would be his grimy bastard Jersey offspring, there’s some Springsteen in them.

You’ll hate this album because its final track is a 9:45 dirge titled “Tried To Quit Smoking” where Stickles sings the soul-scrubbing refrain of “It’s not that I wanted to hurt you, I just didn’t care if I did.”

You’ll hate this album, because if you listen to it long enough, you’ll start to believe him.

You’ll hate this album because WD realized this weekend (N.B. Norman, where now every time the football games mean less than the nostalgia) what Titus truly reminds him of. Because they’re loud, often obnoxious and without an ounce of tact, sometimes bitingly intellectual, sometimes scrapped from deepest parts of their souls, and sometimes even poetic, they remind WD of close to every night in his 20s spent at America’s perfect bar, about which was once written:

It was all wood and brass. TVs littered here and there and apt 
college town memorabilia adorned the walls. It felt old. A million conversations had


been had there. A million chicks convinced to go home with a million idiots. A million
relationships ended there. A million birthday parties spent. A million fights and a
million hugs separated and encouraged. It remembered none of them. Once your
time was up, be it by graduation or Cirrhosis, it wouldn’t remember you.

I love this album. It’s certainly one of the select few in 2012 for which my appreciation, even elation, has nudged over the line to love.

But you’ll hate it.


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