The mad genius that is Captain Vulpine! returns to haunt your dreams & waking moments with more tales of debauchery, woe, sea shanties & even a demon being released from the Pale. Argentavis Exponential is the third album from this maverick Portland songwriter (well, under this pseudonym anyway…). Written as part of the 2015 edition of February Album Writing Month, Argentavis Exponential drags the listener into the Captain’s wild world.
The album opens with The Grey Pride Parade, a song that follows the extravigant lyrical stylings that Captain Vulpine! has made famous. Spiced with wonderful rhyming patterns, The Grey Pride Parade sends the listener on a lyrical journey that is just as much fun as the densely layered music it compliments.
“The court and it’s jesters sequester a festering test during times of trial
While bile beguiles a smile from the vile all the while bewitching twitching pyres.
When fires blaze there’s a maze through the haze of chaos screams and horror
But what follows next betwixt the behexed is a scene serene forevermore”
One of my favourite tracks on the album is Dirge For A Mutinous Philosopher, a poignant look at the world through the despairing eyes of a man who seems to be trying to attone for his opinions & world view. There is some powerful imagery in the lyrics & the layered vocals deliver the words to the listener with depth & unrepentant emotion. The most compelling lines in the song revolve around the image of the scarecrow – a metaphor for the lives we live masked behind the lies we feel we need to protect ourselves:
“Do you take me as a scarecrow?
Do I not yearn to fly?
Crucified and stuffed with straw, condemned to live a lie “
The album closes with A Life Of Quiet Shame, a poignant song about life in & out of the spotlight of public life. In his liner notes for the demo released during FAWM, he spoke of how this song came about & how he simply broke all of his usual song writting rules & churned out this beautiful little tune with more honesty then he perhaps desired.
“I live a life of quiet shame
No man should ever bare my name
I sleep on a growing bed of nails
Add one for every time I fail
You waste on me your pity
While I am terrified of why
You take comfort in the city
That confined me to the night“
Argentavis Exponential is available from Captain Vulpine’s Bandcamp site. And if you double your money (plus thirty cents) you can purchase his entire discography at a reduced cost (35% off!). All the mayhem, dirges & sea shanties to keep you wondering if the world out beyond your front door is truly as safe as you believe it to be. Take a few moments, buy his albums & enjoy the mad genius that is Captain Vulpine!