Release Date: 03.14.00
Record label: dreamworks
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.
The Most Beautiful of Freaks
by: peter naldrett - uk correspondent
If the last Eels album was the musical equivalent to a funeral, then the stunning follow-up, Daisies Of The Galaxy, can be nothing else than the wake. With a more upbeat feel and optimistic outlook than 1998's acclaimed Electro-shock Blues, frontman E has used the new album to close the door on a dark, depressing part of his life and stroll casually into the sunny future.
The last Eels CD came out at a time when E's sister had committed suicide and his mother had died after a long illness. Time has done a lot to heal the pain and introduce a whole new side to the Eels' sound, helped along by the talented involvement of REM guitarist, Peter Buck.
Even though Daisies Of The Galaxy kicks off with the sound of a funeral in "Grace Kelly Blues," it doesn't take long before the pessimism is booted out the window and told never to return. Indeed, "I Like Birds" is a retrospective tribute to E's mother who used to feed her feathered friends, "A Daisy Through Concrete" is a superbly meaty jazz track and the cover of the album comes from a happy 1950s kids book.
Though this third Eels album still has its down moments, they are thankfully few and another high point comes with "Flyswatter," an addictive rhythm with senseless lyrics about, of all things, creatures that "keep you itchin".
Daisies Of The Galaxy is a fun album, musically masterful and beautifully sung by an on-form E. And, of course, it features the radio-popular "Mr E's Beautiful Blues," under-played as a bonus track and surprisingly not featured at all on the sleeve notes.
Goddam right, it's a beautiful album. Mar-2000