Singled Out: Murder Murder's Sweet Revenge
Living in Sudbury Ontario, one is hard pressed to find a place free from the sounds of trains. The rails criss-cross the city, going from the mines and smelters right through the centre of town on their way to buyers down in Southern Ontario and the US. Downtown is flanked by a large train yard, tunnels under and bridges over it, traversed daily by most Sudburians. The train goes through many of our backyards, shaking windows, screeching breaks, and rumbling steadily through the night. Everyone in the city is used to the occasional latecomer, stuck in front of checker-board bars and flashing lights for five or even ten minutes, often in the middle of the day. Coming from a musical style steeped in folk roots, it was inevitable that we would try our hand at that storied tradition of writing the rails.
The stories must be grand. Even to this day there is nothing to us as breath taking as the experience of being a few feet from a speeding freight train. It's clear where the fascination stems from - the rails have worked as a ribbon to tie together countries and bridge the gap between great land masses. None more vast and varied than the Canadian landscape. Railways have been the veins that pump life into our communities, and that have served as a trusted form of transportation, both legitimate and otherwise. The latter brings forth it's own tradition, as well as the exchange of culture and information, even community. Murder Murder's logo is based on a hobo symbol used by many who rode the rails. We saw the stylized WW that represents "barking dogs here" and flipped it upside down for ourselves.
Even more than all of that, the train contains it's own unmistakable musical language. From the pulsing rhythm of early chain gang chants, to the excitement of Guy Clark's "Texas 1947", to the "Orange Blossom Special", or anything recorded in early Johnny Cash sessions, these sounds have been utilized by artists for generations.
In Sweet Revenge, we take a stab at the "train song", as we attempt to have every moment mimic those undeniable sounds. In the intro we try to bring forth the feeling of an oncoming train, and then build the intensity until it seems like the wheels are gonna fall off.
The lyrics are simple and tell a story of a dark desire for vengeance, as the narrator dreams of hopping a south bound freight train in search of those who have done him wrong. It never is made clear what the deed is that he is reckoning for, and truthfully, we don't even know ourselves. It's only clear the his lust for blood is an all-consuming one, and that justice is inevitable.
In the breakdown-style bridge we skip a beat, the way your heart does when a train passes meters from your face, and as we bring the song to a close, we return to a steady rhythmic pace as we attempt to bring back that feeling of approach. We again build intensity as two trains hurtle towards each other down the tracks, whistles blaring, and culminating in the twisted chaos of a train wreck.
This is our submission, albeit a modest one, to that time honoured tradition. Does it stand up to the legendary standards? Maybe not. But nonetheless we are proud of it, and hope that you enjoy it.
From all of us in Murder Murder, thanks and see you soon!
Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself and learn more about the album right here!