The Dresden Dolls
The Dresden Dolls


4.0
excellent

Review

by cowpatpixie USER (1 Reviews)
December 26th, 2005 | 35 replies


Release Date: 2003 | Tracklist


The Dresden Dolls are a band I first heard about in an old issue of Rocksound, with one of their tracks on a free CD. From that moment on, I was addicted, so I'd be careful when listening to this album...you'll soon become dependant on it. Trust me.

Good Day
While not an amazingly revolutionary track, the CD opener begins with almost eerie sounding piano and sets the tone for the album. The first verse is played softly, almost forcing you to strain your ears to hear, but then the chorus kicks in and from then on, the dynamics are very well constructed. The sound of breaking glass behind the words “I picked up the pieces of my broken ego" is a nice touch, you can tell someone’s thought about the track a lot.

Track Rating: 4/5

Girl Anachronism
As with Good Day, the beginning is quiet, and eerie sounding, but from the moment Palmer shouts “1, 2, 3, 4…" you just know this track is going to be anything but quiet. The whole song is 2:58 of pure genius, being let down neither lyrically nor musically. On a side note, the video for this (which is included on the CD) is also very well directed for a budget of $5000 and the editorial process having taken place in Palmer’s kitchen on an Apple Mac. The only qualm I have about this track is its length, it really is a short burst of energy, contrasting with the next track.

Track Rating: 4/5

Missed Me
The third track on an album already set up to be pretty amazing, it brings the pace right down to a slow, staccato tiptoe through the story of a manipulative little girl and her lover, demonstrating that The Dresden Dolls can handle both blistering piano rock and what can only be described as anti-ballads. Though I’ve sung its praises thus far, in my own personal opinion Missed Me is one of the weakest tracks on the record, as much better tracks are in store for a listener.

Track Rating: 3/5

Half Jack
The aforementioned much better tracks don’t take their time coming around, as this utter crescendo of a song – beginning with the slow, softly-sung “Half underwater…" and building up to the half sung, half screamed “See Jack run" – is an absolutely amazing specimen of mind-blowing songwriting combined with sophisticated lyrics. Lines that bleed into one another, such as the harmonised “…I’m so high not even you and all your love could bring me down, on 83rd he never found the magic words…" only serve to add to the song’s appeal, making for interesting listening.

Track Rating: 5/5

672
The shortest song on the album, coming in at only 1.24, but one of the most intriguing. To date, Palmer has not revealed (to my knowledge) what this song refers to, and so the listener can only guess at what meaning the three-digit number may hold for Palmer – if, indeed, any at all. In my opinion, the nature of this track should make it exempt from rating, but at a push:

Track Rating: 3.75/5

Coin-Operated Boy
The band’s biggest single from this record, and you can bet your sweet bippy half the people reading this got into The Dolls through this track. A whimsical-sounding piano plays alongside complimentary, almost military-sounding, drums courtesy of Viglione (who, by the by, plays the Coin-Operated Boy in the video) while Palmer sings about her dreams of mechanical men. Speculation about this song is rife among fans, but most come to the conclusion that it is either about the plight of women to find the man of their dreams, or a dildo. The choice is yours.

Track Rating: 4/5

Gravity
When I first heard this song, my jaw actually dropped. Not cartoon to-the-floor-ooga-ooga-eyes-on-stalks type of dropping, I was just transfixed and wasn’t really paying attention to my mouth, which was hanging slightly open. This has only ever happened to me with one other track (Ani DiFranco’s Gravel, but that’s beside the point), and so I feel is the mark of an excellent song. And excellent it proves to be, with a chaotic-sounding breakdown and off-the-wall piano riffs, it well deserves its 5/5 rating.

Track Rating: 5/5

Bad Habit
This track begins suddenly, sounding desperate and frantic, as the lyrics proceed to compliment. Many listeners will accept the most obvious meaning of the song and move on, but some hardcore fans cling to obscure interpretations – whichever you believe, it really doesn’t subtract from the quality of the song. If anything, it adds to it, as it is my own belief that a song which provokes so much thought is a song worthy of anyone’s ears.

4.5/5

The Perfect Fit
As we have seen earlier in the album, The Dresden Dolls do dynamics (try saying that at a high speed) very, very well. The Perfect Fit is no exception. So far from the previous track in pace, it almost seems like a different CD. But fear not, gentle listener, I can assure you that it is, in fact, the very same one. The track, like Half Jack and many of the other DD tracks, is constructed excellently, building up to a peak at the very end (and referencing The Doors on the way up! Now that’s class)

Track Rating: 3.5/5

The Jeep Song
It sounds like it could be a happy I Love You song, but fear not – it’s a bouncy break-up song about boys, and cars, and all that fun stuff. The change in production is refreshing and keeps things interesting, while Palmer plans to drive cars off trails of tears. All in all, a very good track.

Track Rating: 4/5

Slide
This track, upon first listen, could very well fool you into thinking that it’s a quiet, strange one, and that it is perfectly content to stay that way. However, if you’ve been paying attention to this album at all you should know that this is when magic happens. Listen long enough – 3.38 to be exact – you’ll hear what, in my opinion, is the highlight of the album. Palmer and Viglione build up a crescendo, and then Palmer, there really is no other word for it, grizzles the words “the orange man’s got you". I’ve been an avid horror fan for a while, now, and therefore I have been quite de-sensitised, and yet listening to this, at 11PM at night in my bare loft bedroom, truly put me on edge for at least 3 days. And I loved it.

Track Rating: 5/5

Truce
If, by this point, you have not completely understood the excellence of Palmer’s writing, prepare for a complete revolution of your opinions. The track is complete, with a tempo change at the end, which really does make you want to dance, or shout, or scream, or laugh, or do something extraordinary. Again, the whole song is one big crescendo, building up to a complete breakdown at the end; a complete release of creativity and energy which leaves the listener reeling and immediately reaching for the play button once more. I did warn you.

Track Rating: 5/5


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Comments:Add a Comment 
Med57
Moderator
December 26th 2005


1001 Comments


I like the Dresden Dolls, and this is a decent album. Good track by track as well...nice and detailed.

Jawaharal
December 26th 2005


1832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I really don't like this band. I can't get into them at all.

Reywas
December 26th 2005


148 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review, great album.

Zappa
December 26th 2005


355 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is a really awesome album.

Reywas
December 26th 2005


148 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I remember you having The DD avatar Zappa.

masada
December 26th 2005


2733 Comments


I've listened to this before. It's good stuff.

Jawaharal
December 26th 2005


1832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Wait, nevermind, these guys are really cool. Bad Habit and Gravity are my favorites.

Zebra
Moderator
December 26th 2005


2647 Comments


I just can't get into the Dresdon Dolls. I realize that there music is good, but I just don't like it.

Good tbt review.

Chilly-Bean-Bop
December 26th 2005


344 Comments


I really love the Dresden Dolls. Nice review.

Zappa
December 26th 2005


355 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

My favorite song is "The Perfect Fit," by the way.

OrbDragon
December 27th 2005


152 Comments


Such a fun album. I really enjoyed reading that review. I agree about "Slide".

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 27th 2005


2125 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I like this band a lot.

Reywas
December 27th 2005


148 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

br3ad man your musical variety never ceazes to amaze me.

wtfmates19
January 25th 2006


5 Comments


I enjoy this album. A lot. I think I listened to it 4 times in a row once. It's all just so fun and catchy and excellent and yes, I realize this is a run on sentence. I think my favorite song here is Half-Jack. It is pure greatness with it's slow buildup, and all. Every song is awesome.This Message Edited On 01.25.06

LivingZen
February 26th 2006


13 Comments


I like the album, but I found that it took me far too long to get myself into it. The Dresden Dolls are really an acquired taste. But i'm getting into it slowly, Gravity is my favorite by far.

Reywas
February 26th 2006


148 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Youtube has a pretty large Dresden Dolls section. Check out Half Jack live. Hawt.

Zappa
February 26th 2006


355 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Wow, there is a lot on YouTube. Thank you sir.

Rockstar GSR
March 5th 2006


6 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

One of my friends got me into this band, and the thing is.. Just two days before she played Girl Anacronism for me over the phone and I despised it. She also had it on her myspace and I got a chance to actually listen to the song. Within a week I bought the Cd.
It's something totally different in this day and age. It brings to mind an early 1900's vibe. Some reason I picture an upscale bar, cigar smoke and two musicians telling a story. That is what Music like this is supposed to do. Some could say music in General. The Dresden Dolls have me anticipating the release of their next cd in the next month and I half.. Not many bands have hooked me like this..This Message Edited On 03.04.06

The Jungler
March 5th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I just picked up a sampler of the new LP, Yes, Virginia from my local indie record store for free, The stuff was good, but not nearly as angry or catchy as some of the stuff on here. Brian sings alot more backing vocals. Never the less I'm looking forward to it. This was a good CD but I bet YV will blow them up.This Message Edited On 03.05.06

Reywas
April 14th 2006


148 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yes Virginia isn't as good as this release. It's not bad, just not as good.



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