Dead Fingers: Self-Titled

Dead Fingers
(Fat Possum)

The wonderful gift of music is that there is something for everyone floating around out there. Some genres have mass appeal and some are listener-specific. This disc is an example of one that is searching for both its own sound and audience niche. The brainchild of Taylor and Kate Hollingsworth, Dead Fingers is has the sound of a pet project that was funded with a greater (and possibly unachieved) goal in mind.

The variety of sound that composes this album is both its strength and its undoing. Without consistency of style, there is certainly a showcase of range that most artists can only hope to share with their listeners. In one sweep, we are fed a buffet of tastes and interests. The experimentation with sound and lyrics can satiate the tastes of the hungry, open-minded listener. Each song is a fun and good-natured story that either ponders light-hearted life-centric questions or explores the more practical insights of a deep-thinker viewing the world through their own unique lens. The sounds behind the music are both head-bopping and toe-tapping. The scope of their musical offering goes in every direction with points of interest in every corner.

The wrinkle in the rug is that the variety also lacks any type of all-encompassing lifeline to wrap the threads together; there is an absence of consistency. With each track being able to stand on its own, the album never gels into a cohesive whole. It’s like being at a family night at the elementary school: do you want to do the ring toss or the three-legged race? Whereas many artists display their range over the course of a few albums, this is an all-out display of everything the group can offer. The music surely delivers, it is the depth and direction of their motivation that swerves and buckles. It is all trees and no forest.

Dead Fingers doesn’t pull any punches. This disc is either a pitfall, blowing all the talent in one musical, eleven song orgasm or a multi-colored pallet from which they plan to create future tapestries. Is it one big show of talented range or a platform on which they will build future successes? Listen and decide. You’ll enjoy the sound even if you don’t know what to do with it.