Recordings

By Tom Reardon, August 2020 issue.

Mishka ShubalyI’ll Be Gone

When you boil some water, assuming you have, it is often an act of necessity. There are the bubbles and the steam that lets us know what is happening. We can see the change occurring as a liquid becomes a gas and sometimes, we even hold our hand over the water so we can feel the heat. If you’ve ever had the urge to touch the water or on one of those really bad days, take the water and pour it over your head, you can instantly imagine the pain that would be brought on by something that we usually find so soothing, so serene.

Listening to Mishka Shubaly’s new record, I’ll Be Gone, is something similar to the dark fantasy of dousing your emotional pain with boiling water. You know it is going to hurt but you are also so curious as to what it will really feel like. It is a short record filled with strong inclinations of the search for peace in a world where struggle is often king, and frustration is a mocking jester.

I’ll Be Gone is an efficient and proper execution of the solitary exploration of pain, and the aftereffects of Shubaly’s work will most definitely leave a mark, just as boiling water does to skin.

It is also beautiful, as well, with the pared down honkytonk inspired instrumentation and wistful phrasing of a true poet. It is safe to say it is my favorite new record of the year (although I’m still loving the new JJCnV offering, so I’ll Be Gone might be in second place, to be accurate) and definitely my favorite record by Shubaly. The singer/songwriter is also an author and comedian, so painful subject matter is nothing new to him. In fact, it is hard to imagine someone out there conveying what it feels like to be living in the middle of a pandemic, racial unrest, and the bewildering politics of a mad con man better than my fellow Phoenician.

Bookended by two brother/sister/kissing cousin songs, “You Were the Song” and “You Were the Band,” I’ll Be Gone is rife with the kind of word play fans of Shubaly have come to expect from his literary and musical work. You may even be tempted to smile as his words take chunks out of your soul because it feels to good to be eviscerated by things you wish you would have said yourself and you can sing along, too. Shubaly has really come into his unique voice on I’ll Be Gone, and it is the best he has sounded on record.

The cover of Fred Eaglesmith’s “Trucker Speed” is a nugget of gold amidst the other five gems on this offering. If you are not familiar with the original version of the song, you are probably going to fall in love with Shubaly’s take on this paean to lonely life on the road. Allison Langerak’s beautiful vocals help create a “beauty and the beast” effect on “Trucker Speed” even though Shubaly has truly never sounded better. With Don Cento’s fantastic work on the keys, the song grips the heart and twists, ringing out the blood, sweat, and tears of a true road warrior which is subject matter that Shubaly knows only too well.

In a record filled with great lines, two of my all-time favorites occur on another epic road song, “This Road Has Tolls.” When Shubaly sings, “I got every single color of black rock and roll skull t-shirt now remind me what I’m dying for. Feel like I’m losing the narrative, speaking a language I no longer understand,” every musician will die a little bit alongside the singer as he wonders what all these cloth trophies add up to in the grand ledger of rock and roll life. At the end of the song when Shubaly sings, “If I ever make it home I’ll find home has lost everything (that) made it home to me” it truly sums up what it means to be a wandering soul, lost in a  desert of dry humor and empty, unwashed whiskey glasses.

Buy this record now. I did.


Photo by Kenny Eliason on Unsplash

National Pride Grant money

The LGBTQIA+ National Grant allows eligible small businesses to receive one of 25 grants totaling $25,000. Founders First is committed to increasing the number of diverse founder-led companies generating over $1 million in revenue and creating premium-wage jobs. To be eligible, the company's founder must identify as LGBTQIA+, have an active U.S.-based business, be the CEO, President, or owner, and employ between 2 and 50 employees

SAN DIEGO (PRWEB) May 06, 2023 -- Founders First CDC (Founders First), a national 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that empowers the expansion of diverse founder-led, revenue-generating businesses alongside TurningPoint Executive Search, is pleased to announce that the inaugural National Pride Grant, a grant fund to support U.S. based LGBTQIA+ small business owners, is now open for pre-registration.

Keep readingShow less

The Perfect Jean

Disclaimer: This product has been tested and reviewed by our writer and any views or opinions are their own. Please note there are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, we may earn a commission if you make a purchase.

I don’t know what it is with men’s jeans that make it so difficult to find the right pair. It takes time to go through all these denim brands and try styles like straight-legged, boot-cut, and then the disco favorite, flared jeans. Thanks to popular metal bands back in the day, acid-washed and stone-washed jeans were a thing–pair those with a biker jacket and some big hair, and you were set.

Keep readingShow less
Photo by Margo Amala on Unsplash

The Best Cannabis Edibles for 2023

Disclaimer: Please note there are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, we may earn a commission if you make a purchase.

I think we’ve all been there back in the day when we smoked our first joint, and then some, (sorry mom)–hacking, coughing, and choking on the herbaceous weed. Nowadays, there are several products on the market that produces the same effects but without a sore throat like the popular cannabis edibles.

Keep readingShow less