Michael Dean Damron's debut solo record, "A Perfect Day for a Funeral", is full of love and hate. With some of the Northwest's best players (in the blues, folk, and country scene), Damron has created a soulful, rich collection of melodic, intimate songs that give you a deep look into his psyche.
For those familiar with Michael Dean Damron, (also known as Mike D., front-man for the political rock 'n' roll outfit I Can Lick Any Sonofabitch in the House), "A Perfect Day for a Funeral" is a long time coming.
Engineered, mixed, and produced by accomplished producer and multi-instrumentalist musician Lewi Longmire (Jackie O-Motherfucker, Kevin "Bingo" Richey, James Low, Little Sue, and Michael Hurley), "A Perfect Day for a Funeral" finds Damron singing about what he knows.
Whether he's singing about the he collapse of his first marriage, angrily, in the title track. And embracing new found love on the ballad "Montana", or discussing racism and murder on "Spit" (a true story about Damron's friend Lin "Spit" Newborn, the first social activist killed on U.S. soil in thirty years). He's always singing from the heart, speaking his mind - and pulling no punches.
Then, on "Blame It On the Whiskey" he tells the tale of a man who had it all and, through drugs and alcohol, loses it, while "Outlaw Song" is a song reflecting on Damron's inner demons, sometimes wishing he was never born.
"Miss Amphetamine" is the only rocker on the album, a back-porch, Southern-friend blues number.
Ending with "New Paint", the organ's and Damron's voice seem optimistic, but the lyrics proclaim "There ain't no new paint that is gonna change what's been done, 'cause what's done is done". Still, he makes you feel as if the past is behind you and helps you move forward.
The music is beautifully crafted, and rather relaxing (compared to Damron's rock alter ego). However, the lyrics are just as biting as Damron's other work. When all is said and done, Damron's first solo record will quickly grab you and become one of your favorite records of the year. It's a beautiful blend of country, folk, soul, and blues music that show the rootsier side of Damron.