Record #328: The Evens – Get Evens (2006)

Fugazi was always sort of like the Beatles of the punk scene, so it makes sense that Ian MacKaye’s band with his wife Amy Farina would seem a little bit like Paul McCartney’s early solo work. 
The Evens is far more cynical, of course, but there’s something about the ragged, mathy, husband/wife vocals that evokes Ram.

The entire instrumentation of the record begins and ends with the two voices, Ian’s Baritone guitar, and Amy’s drums. No overdubs, no distortion, no bass. Any fans of Fugazi’s final record The Argument will find no surprises here. The quieter songs on that disc form the basis of Ian’s guitarwork, while Amy’s drumming is filled with angular shuffles.

The lyrical content is vintage MacKaye–anticapitalist, anticonsumerism, antigovernment–but he’s never been more charming then here, particularly on “Dinner With the President,” wherein he asks why he’s never been invited over “(I live in town,” he says. “It’s not geography”) only to reveal the reason in the third verse (“I know just what I’d do…stand up and yell as the meal is served”).

While there’s nothing here that approaches the sheer heft of Fugazi’s monolithic catalogue, it would be a mistake to dismiss the Evens. Ian is just as sharp and witty as ever, and Amy is as formidable a writing partner as anyone else.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s