Barzelay delivers hushed collection of song-poems
Eef Barzelay has dusted off the Clem Snide moniker for the first time since 2005’s End of Love, an infinitely listenable emo-tinged power-pop record with hints of twang betraying the group’s alt-country roots. Barzelay had put Clem Snide on hiatus while he cut two solo albums, one in 2006 and one in 2008. During this period, a slow evolution began taking place, as he more fully embraced his sad-eyed Red House Painters side, making increasingly hushed, autumnal (yet still melodic) music. Rather than picking up where End of Love left off, Hungry Bird sounds like an extension of previous solo outing Lose Big. Barzelay’s soft, depressed poetry is brushed across the canvas of his wispy songs as if he could float into the ether at any moment, becoming a ghost singing from the wizenened remove of the afterlife. And yet he remains earthbound, believably tethered to his inability to understand this life’s mysteries.
Listen to Clem Snide's "Beard of Bees" from Hungry Bird: