The Joup Friday Album: The Afghan Whigs – In Spades

In SpadesI’m going to keep this short because I’m actually off to Hollywood in a little bit to see The Afghan Whigs on the tour for 2017’s brilliant In Spades. Now, being as there’s a fairly wide rotation of writers for this column, I’m fairly certain this is the only chance I’ll get to do a post before Halloween, and I wanted to do something in keeping with that theme, but the Whigs have been in heavy rotation as pre-concert build-up so I had a bit of a tug-of-war. Then I realized I could write about In Spades and kill two birds with one stone: Whereas I would not normally lump the Whig’s Motown soul by way of hard rock in with my traditional Halloween sonic faire, In Spades is a bit different. This is a creepy record; maybe not all the way through, but most of it. Look at the cover art. Look at the song titles: The Spell, Demon in Profile, Copernicus, The Spell. Hell, look at the video for second single Oriole. Dark, occult and saturated in creepy imagery. Does that girl eat that tarantula? I DON’T WANT TO KNOW! Love that video though. Main man Greg Duli had always had one foot in superstition (Roll the Bones?) but on this latest effort he uses it and perhaps more effectively the imagery of the Occult to create a great rock album that seethes with a dangerous, ritualistic tone that fits the Whigs and their “Shot on Location”, cinematic aesthetic. Crack open a beer, roll a J and sit back and let Duli and Co. usher in a chilly Friday night halfway to our favorite time of the year. Meanwhile, I’ll be witnessing the band in the flesh.

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