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A Stitch in Time – TransformOnline

By Tim Den

If you haven’t already learned such a simple fact, A Stitch in Time is here to remind you again: don’t ever doubt Greg Dulli. Everything he touches is priceless, no exceptions. Even this, an EP composed of two covers and three collaborations, is every bit as necessary as the masterpiece that is Powder Burns. FUCK, someone buy me life insurance before my heart explodes.

Opening with a cover of Massive Attack’s recent newbie “Live With Me,” Dulli’s penchant for tackling surprising covers and turning them into his own classics once again yields superb results. Joined by Mark Lanegan, the song churns and wallows gloriously in its own depraved melancholy, brooding like an alcoholic beat poet: stylishly and romantically. Equally enthralling is “Sublime,” Dulli’s joint venture with Joseph Arthur, on which smooth sensuality is celebrated with thick bass, bedroom eyes wah-wah guitar licks, and intoxicating come-hithers. “Flashback” (a cover of Australian band Fat Freddy’s Drop; again joined by Lanegan) and “They Ride” (co-written by ex-The Afghan Whigs member Rick McCollom) both kick and punch like The Twilight Singers’ best rockers do, but of course Dulli closes out the disc with a last-call feeling, slow burning waltz worthy of lonely, drunken, 4am New Orleans nights (“The Lure Would Prove Too Much”). As the song dwindles down to its last few embers flickering in the distance, a collage of phone messages from friends (and maybe family) can be heard talking to Mr. Dulli. Some laugh, some reminisce, some profess love, all add another wonderfully sentimental dimension to the song. Leave it to the King of Tragic Romanticism to know exactly how to further accentuate an already-heart wrenching tune.

When Dulli sings “sunrise” repeatedly as the song fades out, you realize how such an earnestly dramatic and yearning move would be disastrous and vomit-inducing in lesser hands… but when it’s Greg Dulli we’re talking about, you really do envision the sun coming up over the urban sprawl, as you and your love struggle to stay awake on the top of a roof after a night of boozing, conversation, and bonding. It’s a movie-esque ending that not even the most cynical can dismiss as cliché, because – in this case – the feeling is real. You’ve been there and you can vouch for it, and A Stitch in Time’s closing perfectly recalls that sensation in your chest.

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