Battle Of The Beards (LOV053)
1. Clash It (Ben Davis)
2. Election Protection (Ben Davis)
3. Nine Of Ya (Ben Davis)
4. Gorilla Bot (Ben Davis)
5. Last Drive (Ben Davis)
6. Eloise (Des Ark)
7. If By "Gay" You Mean...(Des Ark)
8. Lord Of The Rings And..(Des Ark)
9. The Fall Of The Skorts (Des Ark)
10. The Subtlies Of..(Des Ark)
11. Brientology(Collaborative) *
12. Sell The Boat!!! (Collaborative)*
The line between project and band is sometimes very faint. Over the years plenty of side projects have blown to full wonder. Postal Service for sometime far outsold the then humble mix of Death Cab For Cutie and DNTEL. The same goes for metal mavens Perfect Circle and their older brothers in Tool, or cartooned Gorillaz and their fleshy brain trust in Blur. So when Aimee Argote of Des Ark and Ben Davis got together to collaborate, the idea of was simple enough but the resulting record has set the bar so high for both artists that they might want to reconsider ever working “solo” again.
Ben Davis, formerly of punk bands including Sleepytime Trio and Milemarker, has developed into a musician with diverse interests and influences. His solo career evolved from a quiet four-track project into a full band ensemble with over a dozen releases including singles, compilations, two full length CDs.
Over the last three years Des Ark has recruited an overwhelmingly devoted army of fans with their stripped down, take no prisoners live performances, and unique take on punk rock song writing. Now after the release of several well received singles, compilation track submissions, and a critically acclaimed EP, this Durham, NC duo blessed the universe with the release of their debut full length album in 2005.
Of course both Argote and Davis had worked together before. On Davis’ 2004 solo record, Aided and Abetted, Argote co-wrote two tracks and sang on the majority of the release. Furthermore this collaboration find solace as Aimee recorded with Jonthan Fuller whom Davis played with in Bats & Mice. So goes the incestuous world of independent rock, but what’s important here is the music and as the songs unfold it becomes clear that the bond the two share is much bigger than the sum of it’s parts.
On Battle Of The Beards, The slow builds and soft confessionals of Argote’s tracks play perfect counterpoint to Davis’ pulsing song craft. Themes weave in and out of infidelity, botched love affairs, and late night rolls in the hay. Aimee belts wherein
Ben whispers, a single piano or acoustic guitar is butted up against a lush orchestra, and by the last note of these 12 tracks you begin to realize the potential of alliance and the unspoken compliments