So‚ a few days after My Morning Jacket's nearly two-hour set at South By Southwest‚ Live Music Beth and I were seated on the couch at SoM HQ‚ streaming the show from Our mouths agape‚ eyes bulging‚ we kept bursting out laughing and making comments like "What the hell is this?!" Mike would occasionally step into the room‚ listen for a moment‚ and nod sagely before going back to his desk to plan world domination.
The odd facial expressions were in reaction to a new My Morning Jacket song called "Highly Suspicious." It was the fourth song in the band's SXSW set‚ which featured new material from the band's upcoming album‚ Evil Urges‚ mixed with golden oldies.
I've had a great time trying to describe the sound of this song to a bunch of people over the last couple of weeks‚ but I think the only way to get it across is to listen to it - or‚ in this case‚ watch them play it.
This video is from a few days before SXSW‚ but if you want to hear the show - which is a great example of the Jacket's monstrous abilities as a live band - check it out the stream at
"Highly Suspicious" is sure to be a conversation piece for a little while‚ as it's such a wild mix of elements the Jacket have been playing with in the last few years - Jim James's convincing falsetto‚ James and guitarist Carl Broemel's punishing six-string assaults‚ and a collective crushing ton of rock. And as for a new sense of humor? I'll let you decide on that one.
Also‚ David Fricke does a good job of putting the song in perspective over at that Rolling Stone website thing. You may have heard of it. (Also‚ they have a video of the SXSW performance‚ which is of much higher quality than this version. Though I don't want to drive you away and into the lap of a corporate rock mag‚ there are benefits to having buckets of cash and influence. One of them is you can buy the rights to have a high-quality‚ legal video on your site. We're getting there...)