Beauty Pill, 'Beauty Pill Describes Things As They Are'
This is a peculiar art-rock record, adventurous both for the band and the listener: There's a riddle about a frozen five-ton mastodon and seven-minute jam in which singer Chad Clark reverse-Brad Paisleys at a colonialist coffee shop. But it's also an easy record to fall into. Washington D.C.'s Beauty Pill surrounds the listener with electronics (added partially because heart surgery left Clark unable to lift his guitar), and the band incorporates these new sounds in unexpected ways, making experimental music that genuinely sounds like the product of experimentation. Its lyrics can be an equal source of wonder. "My neighbor's wi-fi's called 'Magic Negro' now," Clark sings on "Drapetomania!" "I am gonna burn his house down." A pause. "… if I may." Nick Murray