Eric Anders and Mark Obitz are STUCK INSIDE on New LP

By Deuce

There’s a number of fairly distinctive characteristics of STUCK INSIDE, the latest installment of Eric Anders’ and Mark Obitz’s collaborative series Music in the Time of Coronavirus.

For starters, as may or may not befit tunes in such a project, none of them are actually upbeat. Granted, some move faster than others do. But the duo’s perfected the mid-tempo affair, dips down below them for ballads for a good deal of this album, and manage to maintain a feeling of reserve for most of these tracks.

The second is the high pitched tenor that Eric Anders uses to grace these numbers. It can easily cut through the stillness or noise of a room of almost any size. It’s plaintive, emotion-tinged, and highly expressive—regardless of which particular lyrics he happens to be churning out at the time.

Additionally, the production on this collection is air tight. The drums have a good mix, engineered with just the right amount of effects to make them larger than they’d otherwise sound, full of resonance, and with a deliberateness that’s difficult to ignore.

Such is certainly the case on “Morton’s Pillory Plea” and, if you want to understand just what this tune is about, look up the definition of pillory and it will give the lugubrious quality of this one a whole different dimension.

“This Bird Don’t Fly” is an example of the sort of ballads the duo have cooked up that are demonstrative, perhaps, of the notion of sitting in the house (or in the joint, if you know what I mean), longingly looking outside because you can’t quite go out there. Again, once the drums join the party over a minute into it, this tune takes on new life and really comes to fruition.

Believe it or not, this Long Player invokes personification at times, as well. Run through “Lost At Sea” and try to tell me the desultory organ and smattering of electric guitar don’t just feel like aimlessly wandering somewhere—again, without anywhere in particular to go. Ultimately, it’s this sentiment that serves as the motif for this album, which certainly has its place in these days and times.

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