Color: Red & White / 2LP | Weight: 180 Gram
2LP with a Gatefold Jacket.
Last time around, Adam Weiner split Low Cut Connie‘s Dirty Pictures in two parts, releasing a volume a piece in 2017 and 2018. This time, he jams 17 songs into Private Lives, making it a genuine double album in an era of incremental EPs. More than that, Weiner created Private Lives as something of a loose song cycle, a record tied together not in terms of narrative so much as themes. It’s not a novel, it’s a collection of short stories capturing interior monologues from a variety of characters at various stages of contemplation and ease. It’s an idea Weiner has explored since at least “Shake It Little Tina,” if not longer, but it reaches its full fruition on Private Lives, possibly because he’s working with the larger canvas of a double LP. In sheer numbers, Dirty Pictures contained more songs, but having all the tracks pile up on top of each other on Private Lives creates a rolling, resonant journey, one that puts Weiner‘s breadth as a songwriter in sharp relief. Make no mistake, he’s still designed Low Cut Connie as a rock & roll band and doesn’t avoid a bit of old-fashioned boogie. It’s there in the sneering “The Fuckin’ You Get (For the Fuckin’ You Got)” and “Nobody Else Will Believe You,” a clever spin on a Jerry Lee Lewis-styled piano pounder that turns the Killer into a self-empowerment rallying call. These moments of abandon are countered by bittersweet after-hours numbers that range from the bittersweet closer “Stay as Long as You Like” and the sad, stark protest “Look at What They Did” to the desolate “Run to Me Darlin’,” which conjures memories of Big Star‘s Third. Most of the album explores the vast middle ground between the good times and the bad, offering such new wrinkles as the gritty blues of “If I Die” and “Charyse,” an openhearted anthem indebted to Bruce Springsteen that manages to avoid familiar turns taken by the E-Street Band. Taken as a whole, Private Lives is the richest rock & roll Low Cut Connie have made to date and it’s married to Weiner‘s most emotionally resonant set of songs, a combination that’s both potent and moving.