Search - Mekons :: Journey to the End of the Night

Journey to the End of the Night
Journey to the End of the Night
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (13) - Disc #1

The Mekons have been embracing both chaos and beauty since their art-school beginnings in Leeds, England, in 1978. On their latest album, beauty is winning. Through all their changes, from 1978's amateur punk and mid-1980s...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Mekons
Title: Journey to the End of the Night
Members Wishing: 4
Total Copies: 0
Label: Quarter Stick
Original Release Date: 3/7/2000
Release Date: 3/7/2000
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Styles: Hardcore & Punk, Indie & Lo-Fi, New Wave & Post-Punk
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 036172006021

The Mekons have been embracing both chaos and beauty since their art-school beginnings in Leeds, England, in 1978. On their latest album, beauty is winning. Through all their changes, from 1978's amateur punk and mid-1980s country to '90s flirtations with straight indie pop, there's been a spirit of happenstance and discovery to the records. Familiar things seem new to them, like, "How did that get in there? A fiddle? Dance beats? Who'd of thought?!" The genius is making the accidents and contrasting elements fit together this well. Journey to the End of Night is a fairly mellow, almost folksy record at times. The fiddle and acoustic instruments are front and center with the hushed singing of Sally Timms, Jon Langford, and Tom Greenhalgh butting up against the simple drums, fractured bass, and miscellaneous noisemakers. The lyrics are a high point, as always with the Mekons, with their evocative narratives and razor-sharp wit. You can trace this record's roots to their earliest efforts with the occasional discordant, scrappy guitar bit or monotone-spoken lyrics, but its greatest strength is how it combines everything they've ever done into one concise statement. It's a Mekons record for sure, and one of their best. The company this record could keep includes Nick Cave minus the cartoon melodrama, a less American Walkabouts, Richard Thompson, Shane MacGowan, and their own albums like 1979's The Quality of Mercy Is Not Strained, 1985's Fear and Whiskey, or 1991's Curse of the Mekons. --Steve Turner

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CD Reviews

You Can't Live Alone
Michael Pisaro | Evanston, IL (US) | 03/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I've been a fan of the Mekons ever since their epochal "Fear and Whiskey" record in 1985. It didn't seem likely that they would ever surpass the atmosphere of that one (where whiskey seems at first to be the only answer to the fearful dilemmas they enact -- but then you learn that "whiskey" is just a name for the things they really care about -- in three or four words: peace, love and understanding). Here the mood is darker (now that we seem to have run out of ways to be debased, newer, and more subtle forms are being invented), and (although this seems like a contradiction) also more hopeful. Leave it to the Mekons to find new ways to outwit their predators and to find a still beating heart in the darkness. Although the main musical reference here seems to be Reggae, I'm most reminded of the great mystery of classic old blues recordings. What they describe couldn't be worse; but that negative energy turns itself inside out with the release that comes from the act of description, and the joy that comes from the music itself. Don't miss this one."
Best Complete Mekons Album Since "I (Heart) The Mekons"
John Buckley | Washington, DC United States | 03/26/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

""Journey" is the best Mekons album since "I (Heart) The Mekons," and maybe since their epic "Rock'n'Roll." They crafted this bugger, and didn't just toss it off, like 1998's "Me." Jon Langford returns in full, if mellow, form, and Sally Timms, fresh from the accolades of her solo album, turns in her best performance since "Retreat to Memphis." Why does this work so well, even as it rocks so lightly? Mostly because, after years of distraction -- the Waco Bros., solo albums, their rebirth as a conceptual art band -- the Meeks are back as a bloody BAND, and they play like one. If you have friends who've never heard the Mekons, but have heard you rave about them, tell 'em to dive in. It's fine."
They caught me again
Michael Pisaro | 03/16/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"just had time to listen to this once before going to see them. my first reaction was, it's sort of a downer, but after seeing them perform most the songs i wanted to listen to it again and again. the voices come out on top on this one, the production is not spare but it's not murky either, that's the beauty of it, it's clear as the hard light of a streetlamp on a pitch black night. and the songs just catch you. listen twice, three times, it takes you over. my favorite of the moment, Neglect, and that chorus "Give me 10,000 pounds" but tomorrow it'll be something different. There's not a weak song on it. These people love to sing about the dark side but they just shine, shine shine."