It’s been a minute since the last time The Hidden Hand was featured for Wino Wednesday, and for my money, 2004′s Mother Teacher Destroyer was the best thing the band put out in their unfortunately short run. While the prior year’s Divine Propaganda debut had a raw sense of punkish purpose and the follow-up swansong LP, 2007′s The Resurrection of Whiskey Foote, was more complex both thematically and musically, Mother Teacher Destroyer struck and excellent balance of both sides of the band’s personality, propelled by driving fuzz and the dual vocals of Wino and bassist Bruce Falkinburg.
Ultimately, it would be the clash of those two personalities that undid the band, but on Mother Teacher Destroyer, the two figures worked brilliantly off each other, trading off in the lead spot while drummer Dave Hennessy (Evan Tanner joined the band for their third album, but also left soon after) solidified the tracks behind. Whether it was Falkinburg‘s dire proclamations on opener “The Crossing” — the start of that song and the album as immediate as immediate gets — the “we will overcome” call and response of “Half Mast” or the later disillusionment Wino loosed upon “Travesty as Usual,” the album was both viciously of its moment politically and honing in on epic themes. To wit, a track like “Sons of Kings” — my personal favorite and a one that’s been a Wino Wednesday pick before — is as much a fantasy narrative as it is a metaphor for the Iraq War, already endless in its beginning stages in 2004.
This is the 75th week of Wino Wednesday, and as such, I’m stoked to be able to feature an album that I still consider underrated in the man’s discography. You’ll find Mother Teacher Destroyer in full and in HD on the YouTube player below. As always, please enjoy and have a happy Wino Wednesday:
Tags: Maryland doom, Mother Teacher Destroyer, The Hidden Hand, The Hidden Hand Mother Teacher Destroyer, Wino, Wino Wednesday