The Kills – “Echo Home” 10″ (2017)

We’re huge fans of The Kills here at Casa de Life in the Vinyl Lane.  We’ve seen ’em live twice and loved ’em, and last year their latest album Ash & Ice topped my list for best releases in 2016.  Earlier this year when they announced a forthcoming four-song, limited edition (of 1,000, I believe) acoustic 10″ I couldn’t send them my money fast enough – acoustic songs by one of my favorite bands and on a format (specifically the 10″) that I have a bizarre fascination with… they could have charged five times and much and I probably still would have bought it.

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Well, it arrived the other day, and I couldn’t be more impressed.  From the perfect packaging, to the great sound, to the inclusion of a download card it was everything I could have asked for.  Plus it’s an interesting mix of material.  “Echo Home” and “That Love” are both from 2016s Ash & Ice; “Wait” is off the pair’s first ever release, the Black Rooster EP back in 2002; and “Desperado” is a cover of Rihanna track of the same name.  An eclectic mix.

The title track is pure brilliance – just Jamie, Alison, and an acoustic guitar.  We’re treated to Mosshart’s sultriness, but perhaps even more strikingly with Hince’s soulful vocals, something that often gets lost with the bass and percussion on their fuller studio tracks.  It’s a pattern that repeats across Echo Home‘s songs, addressing the one criticism Mrs. Life in the Vinyl Lane have had of The Kills – that Jamie has such a great voice but you rarely get to hear him.  I think of The Kills as sort of “blues punk”, especially their earlier material, and these acoustic treatments are a strong expression of the blues part of that equation.

I think this sucker is sold out as far as the label is concerned, so if you want it you’ll need to track it down via retail or the secondary market.  And it’s well worthy it.

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