The Theater Fire - Everybody Has A Dark Side
Release Date: August 29, 2006
Record Label: Undeniable Records
Just try and resist bursting out into the chorus of the popular party tune “I-I-I-I--Ice Cream” on the Theater Fire’s mariachi-inspired “Fiddle Weaver”. It’s like trying to keep young starlets away from Conor Oberst. Damn near impossible.
The above example is just one instance on Everybody Has A Dark Side, where it becomes hard to take The Theater Fire seriously. The voice of chief songwriter Donald Feagin lends itself quite naturally to soul-searching ballads and tales of regret, but just when you begin to “get him” he pulls out lyrics like the following in the midst of the title track, “Dark Side”:
Even Darth Vader was a child
And his anger made him wild
And the light was lost inside
I have no problem with a band being tongue-in-cheek, but hearing something like that sang in slow southern drawl in the middle of a sleepily strummed dirge is kind of like going to a funeral only to have the corpse pop out of the casket and yell, “You’ve just been Punked!”. You’re left more than a little bewildered before you get the joke.
At their best, The Theater Fire’s Everybody… sounds to be a perfect fit for the soundtrack of a movie somewhere between the Coen brothers’ Oh Brother, Where Art Thou and any Christopher Guest film post This Is Spinal Tap. Rootsy, folk music that’s light on the heart and easy on the head. If you’re into campy Americana about muskets and losing your razor, then you can’t go wrong with this little band from North Texas.
The fire at the arcade was more intense: “These Tears Could Rust a Train”
Coming soon to your local aging hipster bar: Calexico, Iron & Wine, The Old Scratch Revival Singers
This review is a user submitted review from Russ Hockenbury. You can see all of Russ Hockenbury's submitted reviews here.