The Paper Chase

Young Bodies Heal Quickly, You Know

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The Paper Chase's debut album Young Bodies Heal Quickly, You Know clearly sets the band apart from other Texas punk bands. Although debts must be paid to the Butthole Surfers and Carbomb, the Paper Chase blends layers of grit, found sounds, samples, and guitar chunk with delicate piano swells and cello melodies to create a far artier and jarring overall work. Chief song architect John Congleton constructs abrasive but beautiful compositions that overlap one another punctuated by his emotive voice struggling to be heard above the din. In true prog-rock fashion, the album is divided into five movements, each detailing the terrible aspects of existence from death to broken hearts in a diffused, distanced manner. The fifth track, "Neat; Manageable Piles," is a sparse percussive pile of image poems both rejecting and pleading for love. Another passage, the voyeuristic "Goddamn These Hands (I Let Them Touch You)," replays an answering machine tape of Congleton's girlfriend breaking up with him, complete with a heart wrenching thirty seconds of raw instrumental punk anger while she puts his machine on hold and takes another call. With no breaks between songs, Young Bodies is a constantly rolling and spinning collection of emotion, an uncomfortably intriguing collage of sound and confusion that offers new insights with every listen.

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