Feeling the top 5 lists of late, so I bumped up another. Much like my previous top 5, I am covering another major life hero of mine. Liam Lynch is one of the few people in life that I can point to that really steered where my life went. There are times in your life where you either find something or a friend hips you to something that really shifts your life. I remember reading a review of SLC Punk that talked about the one scene where the lead hears punk for the first time as being super trite.
I didn’t think so. I still don’t. Because I have had that experience. Several times. One of them was the first time I saw the Sifl & Olly show.
I have given Sifl & Olly their due in other forums….and I may yet figure out a way to do it (maybe its own top 5 for segments?) here. For now, I will say Sifl & Olly made me find out who was this guy who made the show.
I have been following Liam Lynch’s career for a long time, and I don’t think he ever really got his due as a solo artist. Don’t get me wrong, he has had his time in the sun, on multiple occasions no less. But, I don’t think his non-Sifl & Olly creative pursuits get the love they deserve. So, I am going to.
A few ground rules. 1) No Sifl & Olly songs. They are all fucking amazing, and I have given them heavy due in other arenas. And they may yet get some sun here too. BUT, its a cop out. I want to give Liam his due. 2) I’m not going to included United States of Whatever. Don’t get me wrong. Its a copout. He played it on letterman. He played it with the Foo Fighters in the universal amphitheater. Hell, it was on Sifl & Olly YEARS before it charted. You love it. I love it. I’m going to leave it out for this.
Liam Lynch has been ahead of the game his entire career. Sometimes to positive effect. Sometimes he’s there just too early. Lynchland was his video podcast when apple was trying to make that a thing. It never really caught on, primarily because at that point, you had to really be into apple stuff, and despite their best efforts, the apple store never became the center of life they wanted it to be.
To put it another way, if Lynchland would have started on youtube(in pieces, the time restrictions in the early days wouldn’t work for a 20-40 min episode), I think he would have the huge following he deserves.
But, I digress. Lynchland had a ton of theme episodes, and this particular one comes from there. You could also consider this his Fake Black Sabbath Song.
And holy shit, its my favorite of his kind of style pastiches he does. Maybe its my love for Sabbath. Maybe its just being lost in your head. Maybe its the video.
Whatever it is, I love this shit. Fantastic stuff.
Alot of Liam’s sound centers around the typical guitar/bass/drums standard rock fair. But, I think what sets Liam apart is his sense of meledy and hooks. Ben Folds always said the thing he could never figure out was writing a killer hook. Liam has that in spades. Thats the thing that always keeps me coming back. Its good music to sing along to.
Also its really straightfoward guitar jams. And hell, there is a shortage of that around, I’m glad Liam can fill the void.
I came across this song way early cause in college I was buying his records either directly from his site or from iTunes (once that became a thing). I was hooked to it the moment I heard it. It felt like the next step up from shitty nu-metal to declare your town (like my hometown) is trash. His albums are full of stuff like that.
Nope, not the Dylan song of the same name. That shit is fine. This shit is dope.
I always loved the sense of forward motion in alot of Liam Lynch’s stuff, and this is no exception. This is on a big driving playlist I have.
Also, I love the production here. I think his production got sharper over time. A little too sharp sometimes (I never cared for The Sweet Electric).
Songs about heartbreak are everywhere, but I have always liked the “definitive cutoff” song. Like something is going to change. Everybody has one. Liam has a ton of them. I think he went through something in the mid to late 2000s, and thats when he got his best stuff. Thats when he cut two of his best records. This is from Get Up on the Raft, which I don’t think is as rock solid as How to be a Satellite, but has alot of top shelf tunes. Including this one.
This was the song and video that made me decide to get every single Liam Lynch record from then on out. He had this on Lynchland as a teaser for the soon to be released How to be a Satellite.
Hooked instantly. First from the visual. Then the song. Liam has said several times that he does all of his stuff in the middle of the night (more on this on our #1). This definitely gives that middle-of-the-night work ethos.
Fantastic rhythm. In rap, they would call it a beat. I am not sure you need anything more than a great hook to craft a memorable song. To me, this proves that point.
Lastly, he really does play in that typical songwriter world of relationships and love. I like Liam’s perspective on it. I like this narrator as a ragged man who has been in the proverbial gutter of love and come out the other side.
Instead of doing a top 5, I almost did a retrospective on this whole record. I decided against that because I wanted to give a broader feel of the stuff Liam has put out over his career.
But this was always going to be #1. I bought this record off his website in the post-Sifl & Olly, pre-Lynchland days. And this is still my pick for his best work. And this is the best of that.
You have been there. Been up way to late. Doing stupid shit. Coming up with the next thing to do. Plotting for the future. Then dawn catches you and you disperse.
I have never heard anyone touch on that kind of energy before. But of course Liam Lynch has that. Thats the man. He is the 2-3am strength incarnate. To me, thats when its best to listen to his music. Play it loud that late at night.
These days, I am a victim of Boomer Midnight. But it wasn’t always this way. I had my time when it came to scheming and creating in the middle of the night. I did alot of editing past 12am. God…once I remember driving from New Orleans to Baton Rouge at 3am. I played We’re All-Nighters front to back. Perfect man. A perfect song on a perfect record.
Well, I will leave it at that. I do feel I did make one mistake. I didn’t include any of his comedy stuff. And man he has got some completely hilarious shit out there. I will close out with one of those. Seriously, you should watch Lynchland.