Jamie Lee is not of this world.
Every time we’ve come across Money, in whatever form, that’s the sense that always prevails. Whether’s he’s drenched in the gut-wrench reverb of Bluebell Fields (or in fact any song from our favourite album of 2013, The Shadow Of Heaven), whether he’s stripping off and wading into the crowd for the most stunning live performance we’ve ever seen, or whether he’s just tweeting existential poetry about blow-jobs, he’s the sort of erratic maverick that indie hasn’t had the grace to see for quite some time.
It goes to figure, then, that Suicide Songs feel like poems that have drifted beautifully along the wind and somehow deigned to find form and structure. And, as opener I Am The Lord testifies, they’re far from being entirely maudlin. There is, as always, a psych-tinged edge to the band’s sound, livened here by strings and Eastern influences that start something of a trance.
In a way, that’s what Suicide Songs feels like throughout its duration. Like Lee’s hypnotic resignation to the knife balancing on his forehead on the sleeve, we’re taken by the jagged lines of Hopeless World, the faux-timidity of Night Came, and the rousing high-point of All My Life which sees Lee’s falsetto turn almost gospel-like as it transcends another plane. It’s an exhausting listen, but in the best possible way – this is emotion pushed to its brink, channelling every wound and wail into unflinching high art.