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Monday, August 19, 2013

Crocodiles Crimes of Passion Out Today in UK/EU

Crocodiles Crimes of Passion LP- I would have left the sticker off.

Crocdiles Crimes of Passion Rough Trade UK
Crocodiles Crimes of Passion Picadilly Records UK
Crocodiles Crimes of Passion NME Review 7/10
Crocodiles Crimes of Passion This Is Fake DIY Review 8/10
Crocodiles Chuck Rowell Interview Radio Adeliade
Crocodiles Crimes of Passion Spectrum Culture Review 3.75/5
Crocodiles Last Fm

   When you are an Artist, and you are more or less instantly embraced by a critical and popular Audience upon your debut, that's impressive, but it doesn't say anything about the depth of your character as an Artist. There is something deep and compelling to be said about struggling for your artistic survival prior to "making it."  For an Artist who immediately succeeds upon reaching Artistic maturity, success is simply expected, but for an Artist that struggles to find that success, it's arrival is sweeter and more meaningful.

  Despite having a long history in the music industry, and experiencing success in that history, the path hasn't been a simple one for Crocodiles. The creation of Crimes of Passion, their fourth LP, came under circumstances that are impressive to contemplate.  Crocodiles third LP, Endless Flowers, was released on June 6th 2012 by Frenchkiss/Souterrain.  Souterrain promptly went under. I know this from talking to the principal of Fresh & Only's- another artist that they released, and one that is still featured on their so-called "new releases" page.  Sales of Endless Flowers were poor, and the attendance at live concerts was so-so.  No big festivals, no second tour of the United States. Thus, at the end of the Endless Flowers life cycle they had a record label in the U.S. and little momentum.

 For 90/100 bands that might have been the end, but Crocodiles wrote and recorded a new LP, found a replacement for Souterrain (Zoo Music) and generally handled their shit in a professional way.  That's what you call "Surviving" and for my money I'd rather work with a band that has shown they can persist then a band that has every fucking thing handed to them on a platter. Artists that have struggled have demonstrated that they have it what it takes to survive. Crocodiles have demonstrated that they have what it takes to survive.

 And what is simply not appreciated about Crocodiles and front-man Brandon Welchez, is that while this has been going on, they've essentially established a viable independent label that exists separate from Crocodiles and their future.  That is a real accomplishment, and if you want to give me a list of corresponding achievers It would be a good list to be on.  For whatever reason, this combination of skills doesn't seem to be something that critics have the intelligence to appreciate.

  To take a non-Crocodiles related example, Thee Oh Sees front man is a partner in Castle Face Records of San Francisco and I almost never see it mentioned let alone appreciated. When a working musician creates a functioning record label whose success is traceable to their participation,  that is a fact worth taking into consideration when you assess the actual Art produced by that same Artist.

  It shows an understanding of the ideas that inform creeds like "DIY" and "Indie."  I'm not talking about marketing buzz words, I'm talking about the actual ideology of "DIY."  The fact that an artist/band has started a record label that has released other bands is proof that the band believes in DIY and that their heart is pure.  It should earn them the benefit of the doubt when it comes to making numerically based assessments of new efforts.  The two things are related, even if critics seems disinclined to take the connection into consideration when formulating their opinion of a specific work.

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