Elevate Difference

King for a Day

King for a Day is the soundtrack of my last bittersweet hangover, the series of samplings leading to brie and pernod, unfortunately topped with a chile beer. This means that you should get the CD, even if it does not always inspire happy thoughts. Bobby Conn is not a minimalist, and that’s why I adore him. Rock opera, ornate orchestration filigrees with pretty raw – and raw, pretty – lyrics. I’m delighted to have entered the era of the post-ironic, perhaps (or have we?), and there’s a metallic edge beneath the waxy poignancy of a song like “When the Money’s Gone.” Glockenspiels gling a glad march, and then a tune will violin segue into a rhythmic intro pound. Listeners who appreciated the arch sweep and arc of The Golden Age will find themselves on familiar ground. Michael Zerang returns for percussion. Saxophones open “Twenty-one,” an apparent depiction of a trust-fund hustler, mirror ball and cabaret presentation, but blissfully devoid of schmaltz and sentiment. “Punch the Sky” is a word insertion in the order of Ann Magnuson’s monologues for Bongwater, or the opening recitation of the Dead Kennedys’ Plastic Surgery Disasters. And who couldn’t sing, “I’ve done things, wish I could forget?"

Written by: Erika Mikkalo, April 16th 2007