Song of the Day: Daughn Gibson – The Sound of Law

photo by Brittney Bollay

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song comes from Pennsylvania trucker turned experimental rocker Daughn Gibson. “The Sound of Law” opens up his new LP Me Moan, out now on Sub Pop Records.

Daughn Gibson – The Sound of Law (MP3)

Daughn Gibson is a pretty interesting character. The sound that he’s been developing through his White Denim record All Hell and his Sub Pop debut Me Moan isn’t a common one. In fact, it’s kind of in a league of its own. Gibson combines dark, sample-driven beats and eclectic instrumental arrangements with the classic country overtones of Johnny Cash and Kris Kristofferson. The result is a standoffish mixture that isn’t for the meek, but listen long enough and you’ll start to see the bigger picture of what Gibson has created here. The post-modern conglomeration of sounds plays much into Gibson’s own view of the scene and stance on life, and all of the quirks and curiosities abounding in his sound go above and beyond shock value at all times.

“The Sound of Law” kicks Me Moan off with a bang. A machine gun marching snare and a no nonsense southern guitar hook lead the record towards treacherous, unfamiliar horizons within the first thirty seconds. Gibson’s signature vocal technique serves as the cloaked, cowboy muse that beckons the track forward. “Let it go to a wide eyed road, to the end of a wish and keep in on the line” he howls during the chorus, perhaps willing himself further on down the line, abiding by the rules of the game and taking the cards as they fall. “The Sound of Law” is an epic introduction if there ever was one. It plays like the opening credits song to a classic western full of triumph and tragedy. Me Moan plays a bit like that, trekking across emotional highs and lows to a new level of personal understanding for Gibson. But while the meat of that development happens in the middle of the record, every hero needs his theme song, and “The Sound of Law” is a pretty great choice. It’s also probably the most tantalizing introduction you could witness before diving further into Gibson’s mysterious and rewarding catalogue.

Grab “The Sound of Law” above, and check out Me Moan, his first LP on Sub Pop Records, out now. Also, check out our coverage of Gibson’s set at this year’s Capitol Hill Block Party.

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