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Date: Fri, Jun 22, 2012 at 2:38 PM
Subject: A Documentary Film, Modest Mouse: The Lonesome Crowded West
Modest Mouse meant a lot of things to me as a teenager. It was a band introduced by my first girlfriend at a pivotal time in my life. I was about to graduate high school. Mentally I was preparing myself to leave behind the small town I was raised in and finally discover the unknown that lied outside of those boundaries. Listening to them again today the memories of those innocent days come flooding back to me.
The documentary (directed by RJ Bentler) follows the band through the early years and the stories about the songs that become The Lonesome Crowded West. Band testimonials about being on tours, driving their van, seeing the whole country and through it coming into an awakened state. They saw the endless strip malls and the popularity of consumer culture, the paving of America, and didn’t want to participate. They spoke to being young and lost in a world on brink of a new millennium. The experiences of true pain, the violence of the mind and the confusion of it all–the growing up.
I instantly related to Isaac Brock’s lyrics, the group’s raw, unique sound and the overall sensibility of those songs being about something more than whose fucking cool or what happened on a Friends episode. Lonesome was an album that ended up shaping the person I was to become today. Songs like “Bankrupt On Selling” and “Teeth Like God’s Shoeshine” had depth and emotional complexity that touched exactly what I was internally struggling with.
I might want to go back to those days.