Time for the 31 Days of Music: Best of 2013 to add one of the best bands to ever pick up a guitar and lay down some tracks. Masters of the lo-fi sound Sebadoh has been lying dormant as the Lou Barlow, John Lowenstein and Bob D’Amico worked on other projects. Now 14 years since their last studio album they have returned with a batch of tunes that are some of the best of their career on Defend Yourself.
Barlow and crew keep things simple as they load up with chunky guitars and pounding drums. Kicking things off is “I Will” which starts mellow then explodes into mass of fuzz and noise. Barlow warns that he is about to lose control and the song just about does. The record takes numerous twists and turns as the listener is pulled through a world where fuzz reigns supreme. With a jaunty beat the track “State of Mine” is almost happy and poppy while “Oxygen” and “Final Days” takes things into a dark and dirty direction as they grind things out. My favorite track has to be “Let It Out”, a hauntingly beautiful love song that makes Barlow’s vocals the focal point.
Defend yourself delivers some great tunes that are well written lyrically and musically. The lo-fi sound proves you don’t need all the fancy gizmos and gadgets to make a great album, but then fans of Sebadoh already know this. When listening to this record these dudes sound like they have been playing together every day for years, I guess to them it is just like a riding a bike. Sebadoh is back and may be better than ever.
31 Days of Music: Best of 2013
31 - Futurebirds - Baba Yaga
30 - Mike Snowden - One Man Cigar Box Guitar Band Live
29 - Teen Getaway - Hits and Missives
28 - Barrence Whitfield & the Savages - Dig Thy Savage Soul
27 - Robert Pollard - Honey Locust Honky Tonk
26 - Camper Van Beethoven - La Costa Perdida
25 - Je Suis France - Coleslaw III Drymouth
24 - Dorado - Anger, Hunger, Love and the Fear of Death
23 - Ezra Furman - Day of the Dog
22 - Hymn For Her - Lucy & Wayne's Smokin' Hot Flames
21 - Patrick Sweany - Close To The Floor
20 - Tedo Stone - Good Go Bad
19 - Chandler Travis Three-O - This Is What Bears Look Like Under Water
18 - Devon Allman - Turquoise
17 - Kick The Robot - Music To Fight The Future
16 - Sebadoh - Defend Yourself