Fingertips Explores the Archives: The Elected - Not Going Home
Jeremy from Fingertips joins us every Friday as he scours the betterPropaganda archives, highlighting gems buried a few years back in our database.
This week we bring you "Not Going Home" from The Elected.
Glistening and stately, "Not Going Home" is a spiffy and captivating example of a new sort of rock that's been emerging here in the 21st century, a rock that merges the big and the small in subtle and distinctive ways. While taking a lot of sonic cues from the smooth pop-rock of the '70s, this is not really anything like that sort of stuff. The band's own record label refers to this song as the album's "stadium-sized centerpiece" but I really think they've got it mislabeled; it's only stadium-sized to the extent that the stadium fits onto the HDTV screen in the family room. And to be honest that's really what's so intriguing and different here. Blake Sennett and company here take an expansive melody, rig it up with layers of vocals, underscore it with a ringing, reverb-ing guitar line, and still give us something precise and intimate. Sennett's voice has a wonderful, mouthy sort of character that gives his whispery high notes an unnerving amount of depth. I can't nail this down with words, but the sonic space here is introspective rather than extroverted; even the all-but-shouted vocalizing of the song's final minute sounds personal and close at hand rather than arena-big. Sennett is Jenny Lewis's songwriter partner and guitarist in Rilo Kiley; the Elected is his side project, and the band's album Sun, Sun, Sun (Sub Pop), coincidentally or not, came out the same day in January as Lewis's more widely publicized solo endeavor, Rabbit Fur Coat back in January of 2006. Lewis has now released a second solo CD; no word at this point on if or when the Elected will emerge again.
- Jeremy Schlosberg