Day 320: Casiotone for the Painfully Alone – Vs. Children

14 Jan


Ohhh boy. That band name is a handful.  Well, at least it’s accurate, I guess.

When Owen Ashworth recorded the first songs under the Casiotone for the Painfully Alone moniker, he really was just singing over a Casio keyboard.  Since then, he has added some more instruments and a few guest vocalists to his repertoire, but his ethos remains the same.  He’s making music for the lonely, the heartbroken, and the depressed.  If you don’t exhibit any of these traits, don’t worry—you’ll pick up at least one by the conclusion of a CFTPA record.

While I can’t decide if I’m a fan of this stuff quite yet, it is clear that Owen Ashworth has some kind of Sufjan Stevens complex.  Long song titles featuring namedrops of small towns make up a huge portion of this record, and I can’t help but think “Sufjy did it.  And better.”

I love melodramatic music as much as the next angst-filled teen, really, but Ashworth takes things a little too far sometimes.  Everything seems to go wrong for his forever-alone characters, and when you put these lyrics over the album’s soft keyboard chimes and low-key beats, this music falls closer to cringe inducing than tear jerking.

I can’t say that I hate this record, but that’s probably due to the fact that I’ve only listened to it once. I can’t imagine that I’ll suddenly find the beauty in this music—in fact, I only see it becoming more and more obnoxious with each listen.  Well, haters gonna hate, I suppose.


2 Responses to “Day 320: Casiotone for the Painfully Alone – Vs. Children”

  1. Dave Chops January 14, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

    Mr. Ear: I don’t know Sufjan Stevens’ oevure well enough to have anything to say about Mr. Casiotone’s alleged complex but I can’t allow one omission to go without comment: among the small towns namechecked on this album is a certain Northfield, MN Check it out Carleton grads. Also, I like the little David Bowie “Heroes” reference in Killers.

  2. Yuanny Dollar January 15, 2012 at 4:31 am #

    You know why I love Mr. Ear? Because he will write “Long song titles featuring namedrops of small towns make up a huge portion of this record” and then link to a song called “Killers”. I also enjoyed the Bowie reference, but that was it. No reason to ever listen to this again. Admittedly, Sufjy grew on me, but this never would. Northfield? You say? Isn’t that the town where St. Olaf is?

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