After twelve solid hours of sampling a few dozen new Canadian releases I began to wonder if the majority of Canadian recording artists were suffering from chronic depression. Incredibly, almost every CD I’d slip into the player that day plodded on like a sick horse making its last pathetic march to the glue factory.
After enduring hours of bleak musical landscapes, sad tales of unrequited love and terminal disenchantment I was so convinced that all these privileged Canadians were entirely oblivious to how fortunate they were not to be starving and ducking cluster bombs in some desert war zone that I too was so overcome with such a profound melancholic fever I swear I began contemplating slitting my wrists.
Music is my favorite drug, and I have a tendency to seek out sounds that are both humorous and inspirational. So I find it completely ironic that the most fortunate among us tend to wallow in self-pity, while many of the oppressed in the world are usually more motivated to compose songs of hope that serve to inspire the desperate among them to dance their blues away.
My guess is that when you’re so deeply down there’s nowhere to go but up, and when you’re riding high there’s nowhere to go but down. So, as I found myself fondling the straight razor and contemplating my own demise, I have to thank Ben Everyman for extending his humorous hand out of the darkness and guiding me back into the light.
My dear departed grandmother told me, just before she passed away at ninety-one years of age, that her secret to a long life was a well-developed sense of humour, and if this is true then Ben Everyman is destined to become the oldest living citizen of British Columbia.
Everyman is a multidisciplinary artist who rocks it country blues style as a one man band, similar to, say, someone like Bob Log III. Everyman plays guitar and harmonica while holding down the drum duties with his feet, laying down some surprisingly well crafted party licks anchored in rockabilly, alt-country and jump blues.
His songwriting is overflowing with dry wit and hayseed soap operas that could have been plucked from the annals of hillbilly reality shows like Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and My Big Redneck Wedding with titles like 2AM Drunk, Polyamorous Date Night and Washing Dishes At The Bank.
A gifted songwriter, Everyman also possesses a very strong voice which he puts to good use on a few sardonic ballads including (UUDDLRLRBA) Select Start My Heart, Unquenchable Thirst and First World Suicide Note, a song that poetically addresses the chronically depressive tendencies of the most privileged among us.
Subourbon is a well-balanced piece of work that comes at the listener from many directions. With excellent production from Winton Hauschild (Hannah Georgas, Hey Ocean) the record rocks and cries and bumps and grinds while never losing sight of the fact that life is for living, and if you want to get by in this crazy world, then you need to make sure you’re packing a well-developed sense of humor.
To experience the full transformative properties of this recording you will need to utilize the Ben Everyman Portable Antiquifying Sonic Transformer.
I stand before you a man redeemed and I’m relieved to announce that listening to Subourbon saved my soul on that dark day. So, open your heart, and let Ben Everyman be your salvation too.