Monday, April 13, 2009

A little appreciation for Justice of the Unicorns

OK, so they often sound way too much like early Flaming Lips, with bits of Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd sprinkled around (with a little garnish of Velvet Underground and Bauhaus just to keep it fresh), but once you get over that, there’s a lot to really enjoy about Justice of the Unicorns. Both of their albums are worth the time, but I suggest their newer one, Angels with Uzis.

Justice of the Unicorns are finding a way to be sublimely annoying. Often brilliantly so. At times they get close to what I’d consider the musical equivalent of flarf, with songs such as “The Dragon's Claw - Chapter I” and “Jesus Had a Sweet Girlfriend.”

At the very least, they’re tonally complex, with completely earnest performances of completely self-consciously ironic lyrics and arrangements that tag images like Def Leppard’s one-armed drummer, John Lennon’s ghost, and Home Depot with often ponderous art-rock backdrops.

Here are a couple low-fi videos from the album (but you should also check out on YouTube some Justice of the Unicorns Catface cover versions of The Flaming Lips and Neil Young):


Justice of the Unicorns - Pterodactyl Sun from Jason Lam on Vimeo.

Pterodactyl Sun


Justice of the Unicorns - Fried Rice (Wonder Years Edition) from Jason Lam on Vimeo.

Fried Rice



Covering Neil Young's "Lost in Space"

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