Dead Names

by Ashby and the Oceanns

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about

Recorded in the winter of 2014-2015, Dead Names is mostly about being transgender. Here's a review!

"So, Kimya Dawson doesn’t like me very much. I led a bunch of small children into a medium riot at one of her big shows. I really upset one of her friends, once. I accidentally gave a kid weed in front of her. I played Go Fish on her stage once when she was trying to put on a show. Musicians, as a whole, tend to hate me once they get to know me, usually because of shit like this.

I’m getting off-track here.

When I say that I enjoy anti-folk, it’s a very caveat-heavy enjoyment, because of all the outside baggage I bring to the music. And that’s how I enjoy Dead Names, by Ashby and the Oceanns, a very Dawsonesque album of heartfelt songs more suited to a slumber party than a house party, which is precisely how I like my folk music. Ashby’s singing voice is like that time in 11th grade when the popular girl whispered something to you at the school dance - intimate and exciting, sending a shiver down your spine and making you forget to actually listen to what she said. She makes you want to hear her sing you the phone book. With a break of her voice, she could make YouTube comments sound earnest and endearing.

“Computer Love”, track ten, has a chorus that instantly stuck in my head, and stayed there for a long time. It’s track sixteen (“Nobody’s Son”), though, that has dug its way into my brain, and it’s because of that sort of baggage I was talking about. That song really hits me where I live. It’s already joined Against Me! in my “gender feels” playlist, and should be in yours, too. “Automatic Soul”, track fourteen, is the most radio-sounding song on the album, mostly by dint of its instrument-heavy arrangement and the brain-pleasing pop-ish melody.

Overall, the album is something you want to put on in a dark room, late at night, while you get mildly intoxicated with someone you love. I definitely recommend it.

And did I mention it’s Pay What You Want? Do yourself and your ears a favor and go download it right now."

credits

released March 1, 2015

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about

Ashby and the Oceanns Chicago, Illinois

This is a music project by Ash Barker, a trans/nonbinary artist. New album Future Summers out Summer 2017!
www.patreon.com/ashbyandtheoceanns

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