Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Chills - Brave Words (1987)

This debut full-length from the Chills was produced by Red Krayola's Mayo Thompson; if you haven't picked up his 'Corky's Debt to His Father' yet, get it here! Murkier than the songs of 'Kaleidoscope World', 'Brave Words' is more embracing of the melancholic darkness that was at the heart of much of Martin Phillipps' classic music.
- Ariel

The first proper album from the Chills, following a several-years'-long string of classic indie pop singles, is the culmination of the band's early promise. Produced by Texas art rock weirdo Mayo Thompson, the sound is thick and echoey, adding a layer of foreboding even to relatively bright tunes like the manic opener "Push" and turning songs like the brilliant "16 Heart-throbs" (a creepy, anguished memorial to Jayne Mansfield) into dark, throbbing epics. Andrew Todd's organ work is unusually prominent in the mix, overshadowing even Martin Phillipps' lead vocals on several tracks. The effect tends to treat Phillipps' voice as another instrument, which when combined with the tumbling logorrhea of his lyrics gives the sound an odd, unsettling urgency. Brave Words doesn't have the simplicity and directness of the Chills' early singles (collected on the Kaleidoscope World LP), which caused some longtime fans to dismiss the album upon its release; listened to at some remove, the merits of songs as graceful as "Night of Chill Blue" and the endearing "Look for the Good in Others and They'll See the Good in You" are obvious. Brave Words may well be the Chills' finest album.

[Stewart Mason,]

[Link Removed]


Owen said...

hey, thank you! this is my favourite chills album which in the past I have only had on vinyl...much much thanks, the blog is fantastic!

Melvillain said...

Great selection, thanks!

Michelle said...

Wonderful! Thanks so much!

stupid and contagious said...

Thanks for the wonderful CHILLS stuff Ariel!

I added you as a link!


cultureshot66 said...

Awesome thanx, I've been after this for over a year.

stupid and contagious said...

Thanks guys!

Glad you liked it!

Anonymous said...

Great LP! Only have this on vinyl - thanks for posting... IBx

Will said...

nice, I see it now. finally got that last damn track which I only have on lp.

alain said...

I only have this on cassette, which I've played a million times. Martin is a poet. As always, the lyrics would stand up as poetry, especially things like "Rain."

peter said...

Brave Words

Randy Bodor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Randy Bodor said... this album and blog...bummed that link is broken...and the one added above me here is for kaleidoscope world. bummer. if anyone has it please contact me or leave it here. desperately need it!! cheers xoxo.

kelvin1962 said...

The Chills - Brave Words (1987)


1. Push
2. Rain
3. Speak For Yourself
4. Look For The Good In Others And They'll See The Good In You
5. Wet Blanket
6. Ghosts
7. House With 100 Rooms
8. Party In My Heart
9. Living In A Jungle
10. Dan Destiny And The Silver Dawn
11. Night Of Chill Blue
12. 16 Heart-Throbs
13. Brave Words
14. Dark Carnival
15. Creep

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