The Ascetic Junkies may have recorded their new and stunningly brilliant LP, This Cage Has No Bottom, in a short period of time and in the comfort of their Portland home, but some might feel as though this is an album two years in the making. Although the band’s debut album, One Shoe Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, was a brilliant display of folk/bluegrass in the new age, it was subject to being undeservingly pigeonholed as just an indie folk act. And no matter how wrong and downright stupid these thoughts would have been, they were exactly what was said on occasion.
Then, earlier this year the group released their EP, Don’t Wait For The Rescue Squad, and introduced us (yet, only slightly) to the forthcoming ideology of expresionalist fundamentals that would be in the AJ’s future. Incumbent fans are going to rejoice at what the band has to offer us now.
What makes This Cage Has No Bottom so compelling is without a doubt it’s obviously organic feel. Without using a single electric guitar, the Junkies manage to break down all the typical folk oriented regularities that plague the natural based existence. They do this by advancing their skills as songwriters and overall performers by adding a bit more personality to their songs, and maybe a bit less shock value. This is very evident in “God/Devil/Gov’t”, which might be the follow up to their ever popular 2008 song “A Protest Song”. While not being as direct as they were once noted for, the seriousness of their songwriting skills definitely deserves to be respected even more than ever before.
It’s very easy to see that The Ascetic Junkies have grown profoundly. Although they have already made themselves a household name in their hometown of Portland, it is songs like those found on This Cage Has No Bottom that will make them a world renowned batch of folk influenced gypsies jingling and jangling their way through the world of indie rock. It really isn’t that surprising that this batch of brilliant performers have made and released an album just in time to be one of the finest of 2010. This is an album that everyone his bound to enjoy.
Download: “God Devil Gov’t” by The Ascetic Junkies
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Download: “Water From Wine” by The Ascetic Junkies
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1. Why Do Crows?
2. The Eyeball
4. (Don’t) Panic
5. Get What You Want…
6. Water For Wine
8. (i will sing along)
9. Box Full of Lions
12. Renegade Salesman