Ratboys is a band at that intersection of indie-rock and country music — less Scud Mountain Boys, more Beachwood Sparks... and maybe some Sheryl Crow. Julia Steiner and Dave Sagan are the core of Ratboys, with a bit of jangle in their twang. Her lyrics, in particular, are tangled up in personal stories that shift like surreal memories. The band's sophomore album GN (short for "good night") is a significant step-up both in production and songwriting from AOID, something that could've been made in East Nashville, but was recorded right in their Chicago hometown.
"Elvis Is In The Freezer" recounts a dead family pet put on ice, sung in near rhymes, with the kind of tenderness that only comes after time. In this video, director Kenna Hynes puts the dead cat out front, and works backwards through a sweet story — like Memento, but not messed up (or at least, only slightly). It's the friendship of two women (played by Hania Bigoszewska and Kittyhawk's Kate Grube) told in reverse, first introduced by Steiner at one of her shows, going back chapter by chapter. They hang out in vintage shops and a library, and match old pictures of Louisville to their locations. It's a touching way to not only look at how we meet the important people in our lives, but why they become important — and why they're often the first call when tragedy hits.
GN comes out June 30 on Topshelf.