Fans of a pleasant melody coupled with deceptively cutting lyrics could do a lot worse than check out this little gem from Mountaintop Junkshop. To the lazy listener, the Leicester band’s latest might have a laid back, countrified aura, but this is a whole lot darker than it first seems, bringing male suicide awareness to the fore, by way of its nods to both Frank Stanford, a Mississippi born poet, and Breece D’J Pancake, a West Virginian short story writer, who took their own lives at young ages in 1978 and 1979 respectively.
Perhaps the second verse, dedicated to the latter author, is the most hard-hitting: “Breece, he was hollow, split at the seams,” sings Amy Cooper, looking very glamorous in an outrageously plush video, in deep contrast to the song’s deep-rooted, sympathetic theme, before continuing “There’s no space here for strays or unbranded dreams.”
And that’s the killer blow, right there. While Stanford may have been less conflicted in his motives, his wife having allegedly just confronted him after finding out about his recent love affair, Pancake’s is more convoluted than that with a lot of grey areas. Point of the matter is, it shouldn’t matter what the reasons are – we need to support those most vulnerable in any way we can. A tragic, but ultimately beautiful song.