wickeddchildd loves: The Con & The Liar , we review Deserters !

Sunday, September 7, 2014

The Con & The Liar
 - Deserters

Review by Matt Doria [@DEEninetysix]

Okay, so most of us know what alcohol tastes like. We know what it smells like, and after enough consumption of it, we know what it looks like. But we’ve never really had a way of knowing what it sounds like... Until now. Yes, if you’ve ever wanted to know how your whisky sour sounds in the form of nine powerfully jammed out indie-rock songs, The Con & The Liar are here for you! To the unaware, The Con & The Liar are a Brisbanian rock duo who’ve been tearing up pubs and tearing down genres since May of 2013, and their blues-indie-funk-rock infused debut album ‘Deserters’ (it’s only nine songs long, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and call it an album) is set to launch on October 3.

The record begins with the earnest ‘Like Velociraptors’, a tantalising instrumental beat that draws into a rough, arrant vocal verse which instantaneously had my fingers tapping. It’s clear from the very start that the stripped down sound they apply to themselves in their musical journey is an effortlessly accomplished match for The Con & The Liar. When all you have is a riff, a clash, and a yell, you work against your seemingly ill-fated odds and make the most solid riff, earth-clattering clash, and beetling yell possible, which The Con & The Liar have done flawlessly with this opening track. The flippantly ardent charisma follows throughout all nine of this pub-friendly record’s songs, resulting in an album which is mouthwateringly illusive and decadent.

If this all sounds too good to be true, well, sadly it is. There’s an unmistakable, glaring landmine which plagues this album, the entire body of work lying in a muddy pool of poorly produced sound and broken mastering equipment. The mix on ‘Deserters’ is altogether impoverished, sounding as though it was recorded on a tape deck in a tin garage and mastered using Audacity. If they’re going for the vehemently overcooked cliche of having an intentionally muddy mix,

a)  it’s “been there, done that,” to the point where even the hippest of hipsters cringes their teeth against their perfumed toothpick upon hearing it, and

b)  the effect hinders the overall sound of your album, rather than helps it. This is a definitive case-and-point of that fact.

If it is simply a side effect of not having the proper funds to record in a proper setting or have industry level mastering technique, however, then I genuinely hope they’re able to improve this for future releases, because their style, both lyrically and instrumentally, is incredible. The poor quality of the record leaves a bitter taste behind initially, but thankfully, multiple listens adapts the ear to the sound and allows it to focus on the powerfulness and soulfulness that lies within.

One thought lay invariable throughout listening to this record: The Con & The Liar screams, hollers, and howls “live performance.” Listening to ‘Deserters’ through a good stereo whilst relaxing on the lounge and drinking a stout is enjoyable, yes, but moving around and shaking your head as your lager spills gracefully amongst the crowd to a deafeningly loud melody blasting through venue speakers is what TC&TL is made for. I can easily picture a small, sticky pub venue donning an eager crowd full of floor-tapping ankles and smoothly bouncing heads whilst listening to ‘Deserters’, and its here I want to listen to the record. The Con & The Liar would sound infinitely better live, unquestionably.

Alternatively, Triple J. It’s no surprise that the first thing that comes up when googling “The Con & The Liar” is the duo’s Unearthed profile, because they are the exact type of band you would expect to hear on the station.

Rating: 8/10

Highlight Tracks: I’ve Said This All Before, I Am A Monster

For more info check them out at their facebook page!

The Con & The Liar - Like Velociraptors