Friday, September 10, 2010

All these people understand is a gun in their face or...

Do you remember Ludo?  He was the gentle beast in Labyrinth that helped Sarah through the maze.

He's the inspiration for the name of a band that hails from the Midwest.  From their quirky songwriting I totally get that they are a bit into magic, mischief, mystery and fantasy, but it seems like they would identify more with someone more outgoing one way or another: Didymus or Jareth perhaps.  Nevertheless, that's what they decided to call themselves once they recorded their first album and played their first gig as a full band in 2003.  Let's just call it a tribute to fantasy, as in "We love Ludo, and we want you to love us too."

In 2005 they released a rock opera EP called Broken Bride.  Originally, they had recorded a song called "Broken Bride, Part 1" and it eventually became the impetus to put together the EP and call it a rock opera. Honestly, the majority of the songs on all of their albums sound like they are about to instigate a rock opera of their own so I'm not sure what the idea was there...

But check this out... the UNLV Marching Band performed one of the tracks from that EP as part of an exhibition!

This week, Ludo released their third full-length album, called Prepare For The Preparations.  It's all over the place.  Look, some of their lyrics are witty.  Their music is clean.  But why do they get to get away with putting out a non-cohesive album and still people love them?  When I can't get away with being a all-over-the-place good girl and get what I want?  Life is not fair.

The guys in Ludo love to put on cool parties too.  HalLUDOween  and LUDO Shop of Horrors at the Blue Note in Columbia (Missouri).  A Very LUDO Christmas at the Pageant in St. Louis.  They've done mustache shows too.  I like to be random and I want to throw theme parties, and no one thinks it's cute.  Frankly I am wondering if it's time to hang it all up because I just don't get it.  Every song on each of their albums are born of a random, imaginative thought and they hit you out of nowhere.  Like me! Sheesh.  So what do you see in them that you don't see in me??  I don't like to follow an agenda.  They don't follow one either!  I found proof... Here's the real explanation for Broken Bride:

Basically it is a concept album but ours is only five songs long. We didn't originally set out to do it but Andrew Volpe, our main songwriter, wrote the first song "Broken Bride" which is about a man who goes back in time to save his wife who died in a car accident but ends up in the Jurassic period and all this stuff happens. From there it kind of spiraled out of control. Andrew wanted to keep the story going so we finished it up. We call it a rock opera, but we use that term loosely. A musical theater group in Chicago actually acted out the music which is kind of odd.

Let me try to spell out what's going on in Preparations.  We go from zombies (again) to robots to overbearing drunk dudes; we get two nearly sappy love songs in a row which make you wonder what the punch line was supposed to be, a graveyard, and then the slow dance at a 1950's soc hop.  Yes.  We slow it down and conjure Buddy Holly after conjuring Tim Burton. By then, you may be ready to just accept the final tracks on the album for what they are: fun.  And clean.

Like me!

The release from this album is track 3 - "Whipped Cream."  It's cute.  Where exactly do these self-aware drunks they're singing about hang out?  They sound like fun.

Download Ludo - Whipped Cream

As for those love songs I referred to, I'm afraid to like them because they might be making fun of my need to hear lines like "But the best story that I could ever tell is the one where I am growing old with you" or "I've been hypnotized by all you are". So I have to get through the album to the other side of 1950 and my next-favorite song is "All The Stars In Texas." Fun and clean, as I said.

Download Ludo - All The Stars In Texas

The theme is not far off from one of my favorite Saves The Day songs, "Do You Know What I Love The Most?" Maybe I picked up on that real quick, and that's why.

I know I know - they sound nothing like Saves The Day.  But I am a sucker for the unobvious love songs.  You already know that.

Why don't you join in the party and check out Ludo live?  They tour like it's going out of style.  They're on tour NOW and there's no way you can't find them... Or hit the open road, see some sights, and catch their show at the Pageant on October 17.

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