RJ Comer – Nightly Suicide
Formerly the front man of the Dance Hall Pimps, RJ Comer redefines his musical style with a stripped down version of Americana Rock. RJ released his new single “Nightly Suicide” on February 26th with an accompanying music video due out March 7th. This is first single off of his upcoming EP also named, Nightly Suicide and will be released on March 25th. The metaphorical title track is RJ’s homage to Charles Bukowski—the poet laureate of barflies. The song also illustrates RJ’s early life, which he describes as “a lot of heavy drinking and nightly self-destruction.” Comer’s gritty, soulful vocals and dark riffs authentically convey the stark and sometimes surreal lyrics and imagery of the song.
The music video is inspired by Bukowski’s screenplay Barfly. Marcos Tinez plays the younger RJ, a lonesome alcoholic who is wearing the identical hat RJ is wearing in other clips of the music video to connect past and present. Directed by Guillermo Rodriguez, “Nightly Suicide” was filmed in Granada, Spain and at Los Angeles’s legendary music venue, The Mint. The soon-to-be released EP Nightly Suicide will be available for presale on March 11th. In paying homage to Charles Bukowski, RJ Comer also refers to himself in the track Nightly Suicide, from his upcoming EP.
This is a great tune with some similarities between the two which play out well in the video if you can connect it all through reading about it first. But if you hear it first without knowing that about it, you miss nothing either. As the music is so good it doesn’t matter what it means, but it can’t hurt to know before you partake in this tale of two wonders. You get to feel all the pain and hear all of the wisdom they have in common, as well as watch some of it play out. These elements have to come together or they wouldn’t meld for both a video and song as well as they do. The fact that an equally good production on both ends here is the result, is actually pretty remarkable as they give the same weight of reasons to listen and watch, and that is a testament to both the song and the video in one fell swoop. And it’s no secret that it’s not often the case where both line-up so ridiculously well. This isn’t your granddaddy’s country either, nor is it easy listening or country rock. It’s more of a blues soaked pop exercise in Americana style rock. It’s not easy to completely categorize but it falls somewhere between those, with perhaps a hint of gospel. Other opinions will vary. One thing you don’t get here is Johnny Cash or Willie Nelson storytelling varieties. RJ has his own way of conveying the blues within the country and rock formats. But it’s somehow just as traditional as they ever were, but perhaps more in a Kris Kristofferson sort of way. That is not to call any specific influences out, but if you cross that with the Dylan’s and the Petty’s of the world, you find Americana of this speed every time, and he meets the mark for that upper class of musician. The sound is the first thing you notice, and the rest comes along nicely as the song cooks at just the right heat. If only more artists would practice getting the audio and video production down this well together, Americana would be doing better. Maybe this can make some headway in that department, because it looks and sounds like RJ can handle everything it takes to make hit records in this neighborhood. One single is a strong example to arrive at that opinion with, and it didn’t come from one viewing of this, but it’s the consensus anyway here. I’ve seen and heard act after act who dabble in this style of music just to fit the trend, but this is the real deal. It’s that well-rounded and edged off to the point of a good product pitch for the EP.
You will enjoy this song and won’t reject the video, but more importantly it should influence you to buy the EP, although it is yet to be heard. I’d rather be reviewing that and leaving the single and video to someone else. But there is always the chance I’ll get the opportunity to review the EP as well, which either way I will pick up, especially if it reaches independent record stores. But you can pre-order it online as well as wait for the release to come out before ordering but it always helps support the artists pre-sales and that is just a consumer tip, as I have no tip for RJ Comer and CO, other than to say keep up the good work. It really is a flawless track and a more than satisfying video that gives off a strong smell that the EP is going be everything as good as this well-written and performed monster Americana cut. Top marks for both sound and performance of the song as well as the video acting and engineering.