- by Tom Dumarey
Russian Girlfriends’ new album ‘In The Parlance Of Our Times’ won't be out for two more days, but you can already listen to the whole thing right now while reading this track-by-track feature we did with the Albuquerque-based band.
'In The Parlance Of Our Times' was recorded with the help of All-American Rejects' guitarist Mike Kennerty who recorded the drum tracks at his home studio in Oklahoma. The rest of recording took place at Denver's Black in Bluhm, and Albuquerque's Empty House Studio.
The new record expands on their established style, mixing the best elements of pop and rock 'n' roll with the ferocity and angst of hardcore, and punk rock. The record serves as a follow up to their debut LP "All Around," which the band self-released in 2015 and later reissued through Orange Whip Records and Gunner Records. (photo credit: Harlan Bloom)
This song takes a swing at the "tough guy" culture that has always been a menace to the punk rock scene, which has been written about several times I'd say. The Dead Kennedys were good at this subject. This is our crack at it.
"Angry Bong Rips"
This is one of a few "quarter-life crisis" songs on the record. It's about waking up in your 30's and being pissed off about your shitty job and dead-end relationship. It's about being angry about being aimless.
"The Day We Put The Dog Down"
Adam had to put his dog to sleep. We're all familiar with losing pets and it hits pretty hard. This song is about putting your emotions aside, forcing yourself into resposibility in order to just go on with your life.
This is about confronting personal history. It's based on a true story from the point of view of a pastor's son seeing evil in the religion that raised him and experiencing an inner collapse. As well as hereditary mental illness and historical trauma / ptsd.
This is a love song to a toxic relationship; holding on and loving someone against your better judgement.
This is about Adam trying to get home from work and getting stuck in the pride parade and partying his ass off! Its about letting go of your inhibitions and just having fun. And making homophobes uncomfortable.
"White Guilt/White Heat"
This is about the white-washing of American history, ignoring what this country was actually built upon and taking for granted every modern comfort. The end of humanity will save the world.
"Mark Knopfler is my Moral Compass"
The idea is that in modern American culture, we won't (and don't really have to) sacrifice anything for our comfort or community. We are a "soft culture" built on the enslavement and destruction of others. This is Juxtaposed with Crazy Horse, who fasted and cut 50 pieces of flesh from each of his arms in a ritual before the Battle of Little Bighorn. He did not participate in the actual battle in which the Cheyenne and Lakota annhilated Custer's Calvary, so the ritual was his physical sacrifice. He literally sacrificed his own skin for his people.
This is about the destruction of cultures past and present; a cautionary tale of how history repeats itself in the strangest (or most obvious) ways. This was inspired by Adam's trip to Hovenweep, the ruins of ancient ancestral Puebloans. It's theorized that environmental stressors lead to hording of resources, which led to warfare over these scarce resources. This is a commonality we see throughout history and maybe something we see in the modern world.
OR, Libby Bacon Custer- Colonel Custer's wife. Maybe the wierdest song on the album. It's the fictional story of a calvary soldier going crazy on the prairie and falling in love with Custer's wife Libby. He falls insanley in love with her to the point of crossing the line and joining native tribes in fighting against Custer in order to win his wife.
"Jeremy's Last Stand"
This song is about confronting the jock asshole from the first song. We continue to call him out and point out how ignorance influences many an opinion. It's about confronting the "American Attitude". The subject here is Captain William Fetterman, who had fought in the Civil war but is more known for getting himself and 80 soldiers killed in the Fetterman Massacre. Basically, the guy was a drunk, arrogant, racist asshole who under estimated his enemy and got killed for it.
"Babylon is for Lovers"
This is the conclusion of the album and a summation of the ideas in the early songs, about being a nihilistic millenial, and the later songs about the destruction of humanity and being victims of our own arrogance. The character here is at peace and feels at home once he is literally in touch with the ancient world.