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Good Service’s debut album Please 

Critics have been talking about the spike in surrealism among the output of modern musicians a lot lately, but there are few records that embody the very spirit of this emerging movement like Good Service’s debut album Please does. Please is wholly experimental, blissfully off the cuff, treads lo-fi territory without succumbing to the fuzz and atonal white noise of avant-gardism, and yet its entire tracklist from “And a Foot” to the utterly beautiful “The End” feels accessible to both occasional experimental fans and legit audiophiles alike. Good Service might be an unknown, one-man band at the moment, but with a rookie release like this under his belt, I don’t know that he could have a better start to his career.

“94” had a big impact on me when I sat down with Please for the first time recently. Over the course of about six and a half minutes, Good Service mashes multiple styles of play together, amalgamating rock components with a steady pop framework and a postmodern, punkish filtration that adds to the cerebral tonality of the track significantly. It’s eclectically constructed to put it mildly, but nothing in this song is fragmented; everything is right where it belongs.

“Sys’ro,” “Ira, Lila” and the album-opening “And a Foot” utilize their rough textures to tell us a story that Good Service’s words never could, and though I’d be the first to commend his cryptic poetry for its originality, it’s often not quite as affective as the instrumentation in Please is. All of his emotions are reflected in the waves of sonic intensity that greet us in every one of these tracks, and despite the fact that this is only his first studio album, he doesn’t sound amateurish in any instance here. Contrarily, he comes across like an old pro who knows exactly what kind of record he wants to make.

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From a musician’s perspective, I’ve got to say that this is really some of the most evocative instrumental fabric that I’ve heard from an independent artist in a while. Good Service pays keen attention to the most subtle of intricacies in songs like the poppy “Summer Muses” and the stripped-down shoegazer “Pocket Calendars,” and what results is a tracklist that feels meticulous by design whilst retaining an organic overtone. That’s no easy task to pull off even for the most talented of artists, let alone a greenhorn like this young up and comer.

I cannot wait to see where Good Service takes this sound next. There’s loads of potential to be sorted through in Please; whether it be the tender lyricism of “Washington Avenue” or the sharp colors of “MaPaw,” this is a no-filler listening experience that provides us with a whole lot more studs than it does duds just inside of thirty-minutes. We’ll know more about who this cat is going to become in his next studio effort, but for now, I highly recommend checking out Please the next time that you’re in the market for new and exciting underground sounds that joyfully go against the mainstream grain.

John McCall

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