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Micah P. Hinson | When I Shoot At You With Arrows, I Will Shoot To Destroy You

The southern gothic singer-songwriter raises hell with this apocalyptic release.

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Micah P. Hinson clearly knows the value of a good title. And how to write one. The southern gothic singer-songwriter’s latest album comes with a real corker: When I Shoot At You With Arrows, I Will Shoot To Destroy You. Who wouldn’t want to hear an album with that handle? Some of the songs have great titles too: There’s the title cut, of course. Along with I Am Looking For The Truth, Not A Knife In The Back. And My Blood Will Call Out To You From The Ground. Or my favourite, the short and not-sweet Fuck Your Wisdom. Even his anonymous backing band this time out has a dandy moniker: The Musicians of the Apocalypse. Truth be told, it suits them. Not to mention this devastating, religious-themed artifact. Hinson, you see, is no bait-and-switch artist. He puts just as much blood, sweat, toil and tears into the songs as the titles. So as you might expect, this is some serious dark-night-of-the-soul stuff — narcoleptic pacing, ramshackle rhythms, bare-bones arrangements, cavernous acoustics, cough-syrup wooziness, the whole nine yards. All the better to make room for Hinson’s creaky baritone and grim pronouncements on heaven and hell and life and death and love and misery and the beautiful brutality of the whole damn human condition. On the rare occasions when the volume and pacing rise above that of a candlelit dirge — when the guitars go from strummy and twanging to gnashing and clanging and the organ whistles while the drums clatter and bash — it sounds like an exorcism in a revival tent. Or maybe a mariachi band on a fairground ride that’s spinning out of control while being swarmed by bees. Those are both compliments, by the way. But if it doesn’t sound technically pretty, no wonder; it was all supposedly recorded in a single 24-hour period. That must have been one helluva day. Because this is one helluva powerful record. No matter what you call it. By any other name it would still sound just as apocalyptic.