Have you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.
“Just Try” by The Dandy Warhols
The Dandy Warhols are one of those groups that I easily could have named a half dozen songs to write about that I absolutely adore. They are also one of those groups that all too often seem to be dismissed or written off by the public at large and music nerds alike. But the criminally underrated band have been knocking it out for over two decades now, crafting excellent psych records, alt-rock records, and even a synthy krautrock record in the mix, and hopefully some day they’ll get their due recognition*. In the meantime, I guess they’ll just have spin in my living room and the homes, heads, and hearts of those in the know. So, let’s start in the beginning with the campfire psych-folk jam “Just Try” from the band’s first album, 1995’s Dandys Rule OK.
It’s just so simple, with some studio chatter at the start, some mess-ups left on the tape, correcting course and gradually building the acoustic guitar riffs with Courtney Taylor-Taylor’s subdued drawl lethargically rolling in like some junkie gradually coming to. The song plays melancholy and somber, a living room performance in the early morning hours as the previous evening’s party closes out and burns away. Drunks sleeping it off on the rug or crashed on a sofa, the heads and night owls smoking cigarettes with circles under their eyes. The room is dim. The sun may rise soon. And then those ghostly backing vocals kick in, a haunted eulogy to past loves, dead loves, and a make-believe life that regrettably never played out the way it should have. Crooning lament.
And then it’s over. And I press repeat.
*Here’s to some recognition beyond Dig!, the 2004 documentary about the band and their friendship/rivalry with fellow psych-revivalists The Brian Jonestown Massacre.
From a bunker somewhere in Central Texas, Thomas H. Williams spends most of his time with his wife, his two sons, and his increasingly neurotic dog. He listens to a lot of music, drinks a lot of excellent beers, and gets out from time to time. For even more shenanigans, visit heavenisanincubator.blogspot.com.