"tales of corporate greed, lost souls and societal decline"
12/12/22 Blind Uncle Harry – Visualize Industrial Collapse
We first heard from Blind Uncle Harry in November of last year upon the release of his single “Christmas Day in Australia ”. That track introduced readers of The Static Dive singer, songwriter, guitarist and storyteller to Chris ‘Harry’ Doran. For the better part of a decade he has been touring the world with his unique brand of protest comedy folk songs.
The songman made his international recording debut in 2020 with the album The Gospel According to Uncle Harry. The album featured Blind Uncle Harry classics like “Uh Oh (Sounds Like Somebody Pissed Off Jesus)”. With a sound that lands somewhere between Violent Femmes and Billy Bragg, Doran describes his music as, “hillbilly hippie shreddin’ folk rock.”
Visualize Industrial Collapse is the brand new album from Blind Uncle Harry, released worldwide via all major streaming services on November 18, 2022. Like its predecessor, the 12-song collection features a mix of fan favorites and brand new songs. Chris serves-up tales of corporate greed, lost souls and societal decline in his own unique coffeehouse meets college-rock style.
The record opens on Blind Uncle Harry’s yuletide tale of excess and disillusionment down under, “Christmas Day in Australia”. The wonderfully messy “Dopesmokers of the World Unite and Take Over” follows with a subtle nod to The Smiths. The song has fun with its lo-fi setting and 420 theme, peppered with bits of stoner wisdom like, “everybody needs to chill the fuck out”.
On “American Way” Blind Uncle Harry offers a deceptively upbeat and lyrically scathing critique of capitalism featuring some tasty lead acoustic guitar. The socio-economic observations continue on tracks like “I Just Want You to Know” on which Doran sings of “mindless consumption and endless competition”. “Burn Down the High School ” is the album’s current single and video. The song is a tongue-in-cheek antisocial rebellion anthem featuring one of the album’s few electric guitar solos.
Blind Uncle Harry flies solo on melancholy indie-folk songs like “My Daddy Died When I Was 9 Years-Old” and “Song for Kori”, a heartbreaking tale about devastating effects of poverty on one family. Elsewhere he mixes up the arrangements a bit with the addition of fiddle (“I Just Want You to Know”), trumpet (“Jesus is Coming in a Rat Turd”) and a revolving door of musicians, including frequent guest vocalist Shelby Jo Everett.
“You Said” takes the record on a brief detour into psychedelic pop before steering back to the dire alt-folk observations of “Hole in the Ground”. The album closes with one of the album’s two live tracks. “Four Days Drive to Chiapas” is a fan favorite, performed here with Blind Uncle Harry on guitar and Alex Burgan on vocals.
Check out the “Burn Down the High School” video below. You can also hear that song and “You Said” on the Deep Indie Dive playlist, or listen to the album in its entirety on your favorite streaming service.