Local Music Reviews April 2016

Local Review: Golden Plates – The Light

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Golden Plates
The Light

Deetridge Laboratories
Street: 04.01
Golden Plates = Fang Island + NoFx + Titus Andronicus

With a grand entrance of organ chords and an opening line of “The end is here and I’m finally dead,” the main musician behind Golden Plates, known as Elder Brycen, certainly grabs attention, entering into a rapturous build of him wailing, “No one will come to my funeral,” while guitars and organ rage in the background—and that’s only in the beginning. The Light is the kind of album that might only be understood by those living in the shadow of the Latter Day Saints, but there is definitely enough to laugh about, as “Marriage” features the sing-along chorus of “Please don’t leave me / I will marry you,” eventually changing the word “marry” to the more sinister “bury.” Despite the obvious, lighthearted religious taunting, there is a certain vitriol and sarcasm that comes through in songs like “Communion,” where Elder Brycen mentions the dichotomy of going to church and then completely living a hedonistic lifestyle once church is over: “Tonight we dine / On crackers and wine / Tomorrow night / It’s whiskey and cocaine.” There is kind of a charm in the heretical message of The Light, and anyone in Salt Lake, at some point in their lives, can relate to the sentiments, whether they’re spiritual or not. However, Elder Brycen has a few more tricks up his sleeve than a few religious jokes. There is a sort of lo-fi excellence in songs like “Confirmation,” which are audibly pleasing with or without the witty lyrics. However, there are certain times where there is too much going on instrumentally to really understand the lyrics—production-wise, the balance is a little guitar heavy. The fact that Elder Brycen has fully executed the tongue-in-cheek Golden Plates concept using his own musical prowess is impressive, and I even hear that he DJs for religious events. –Ali Shimkus