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18 Monkeys On A Dead Man's Chest

David Thomas & two pale boysAudio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Price: $27.59 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 9 Songs, 2004 $7.99  
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 19, 2004)
  • Original Release Date: October 19, 2004
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Smog Veil Records
  • ASIN: B00036H6N0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #287,763 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. New Orleans Fuzz
2. Numbers Man
3. Little Sister
4. Habeas Corpus
5. Brunswick Parking Lot
6. Nebraska Alcohol Abuse
7. Sad Eyed Lowlands
8. Golden Surf
9. Prepare for the End

Editorial Reviews

Review

BBC Album of the Week. -- BBC, April 5, 2004

Ceaselessly inventive! -- The Sunday Times, London

They deconstruct musical forms and let them flow into strange, beautiful new shapes. -- The Scotsman

Product Description

A nine-track affair that generates strange and beautiful new shapes, rolling stories, and sonic panoramas out of spontaneous deconstructions created with brass, guitar, electronics, and Thomas' mordant wit and charismatic vocals

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
(3)
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well.....it's David Thomas, what more can I say? January 16, 2005
Format:Audio CD
Let's face it: It is rather silly to review a David Thomas & TPB CD because the faithful--myself included--like him and everyone else is going to hear it as a ridiculous excuse for music, led by a singer who has been sucking too much helium between takes. So here's the deal: If you like Pere Ubu, or just fancy yourself to have an open mind to music that is "outside the box", give this a listen; if not, then buy another Dave Matthews Band album and have fun humming along. To the fans, know that this CD doesn't break any new ground for this band. It is what we have come to expect and love and I for one will get hours of listening enjoyment from it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Looking to go pale. July 6, 2005
Format:Audio CD
David Thomas' creative brainchild borders on the very strange; looping drum lines and beats over his disconnected and demonic vocals. Thomas sends effects swirling around the room, not sparing any vibrato, and makes eloquent use of the effects on Melodeon and Musette. Keith Moline's guitar lines are wonderfully interconnected with the cacophony, giving the listener an ominous feeling of impending doom. Not forgetting the horn player, Andy Diagram's trumpets provide an ambient tone reminding one of "Bitches Brew" by Miles Davis. "New Orleans Fuzz" follows a 12-bar with loops, and even captures a bit of the Cajun city's Creole rhythms on record. "Nebraska Alcohol Abuse" leaves no questions in the listeners mind, but the absence of a band throughout the record intrigues as to what the Two Pale Boys would be like live. [...]
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5.0 out of 5 stars Avant Garde Nostalgia December 12, 2008
Format:Audio CD
For an artist who is at heart an avant gardist (a term of course he would perversely refute), David Thomas' melancholy for the past hovers brutally in the albums he has executed with The Two Pale Boys - Keith Moliné and Andy Diagram; especially Surf's Up and 18 Monkey's On A Dead Man's Chest.

In 1997, in their wisdom, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation decided to demolish a 109-year old bridge. In 2001 Thomas wreaked his revenge.

As Thomas notes in the Surf's Up chapter titled River, the Department put up a sign signifying the bridges ghost:
"Between 1888-1997, a 158 foot single-span pratt thru truss metal bridge crossed French Creek at this location. The Bridge was named the `Wilson Shute Bridge' after Robert Wilson, an early settle along the banks of French Creek. The pin-connected bridge was built by the Penn Bridge Company of Beaver Falls, PA to provice access to the local Pennsylvania agricultural network." - Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

But it did little to appease the behemoth. The bass is relentless on the River while the air around it swirls like a dervish on acid. The thudding recalls the heart-beat of Edgar Allan-Poe's The Tell Tale Heart: "It was a low, dull, quick sound - much such a sound as a watch makes when enveloped in cotton." Poe's character has, of course, committed a heinous crime, the killing of an old man, like the killing of an old bridge. As Moline plays, Thomas, like Poe, wreaks his revenge.

It starts with a clarion call, a muted emergency. Thomas on melodeon and Diagram on trumpet create a funereal ambience that is seductive in its melancholy.
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