We are all Taxpayers. We all have Bones and Lungs.
If all our waking days were as bleak as this band tends to imply, then Taxpayer would have no business making such exhilarating, life- affirming music. What would be the point?
More manic than depressive in temperament, this Boston band has already been compared with its share of hyper literate, big-sounding, high-strung contemporaries. Yet Taxpayer is fast putting all its debts behind.
In fact, the comparisons range much farther afield than the contents of the average city college student's iPod.
Taxpayer Is Recommended If You Like: Franz Kafka, "Donnie Darko," the paintings of Francis Bacon, or the smell of formaldehyde.
Absinthe, they say, gives you lead poisoning, makes you go crazy.³In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes,² said another astute Mass-hole, Benjamin Franklin. Sex may be a great subject for rock n' roll, but death and taxes are timeless. It¹s an apt approach for a group that¹s clearly in it for the long haul.
The four band mates of Taxpayer singer-guitarist Jared Marsh, guitarist Michael Jones, bassist Tim Peters and drummer Rob Adams -- took the long route in getting to their debut album, "Bones & Lungs." Marsh and Adams were almost literally in diapers together. (Well, not the same pair.) The latecomer, Peters, a college-era addition, has already been with the group for a half-dozen years or so now.
And their play for longevity is made plain in the music. The futile quest for safety and comfort are recurring themes; so is disillusion. "When They Were Young" fumes over the empty frivolity of youth; "In My Final Year" anticipates an invalidism that goes well beyond anything imagined by the reigning geezers of rock.
It's heady stuff for a bunch of dudes still in their mid-20s. Dudes who aren¹t even terribly angst-y in their own daily dealings.
If the subject matter is bleak, the music is anything but. It's rapturous. Marauding. Full-throated, knives out. Well-suited for a killer light show, even. The songs on "Bones & Lungs" are coliseum-sized, canyon-filling, mighty enough to speak on behalf of anyone within earshot.
And that's a vast audience. The band is called Taxpayer because the concerns are universal. This is no mere exercise in artful lament -- Eeyore with a beret. This is a powerful demand for something like meaning. Anyone with a number can relate.