Haughty Melodic

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
Since splitting with Soul Coughing a few years back, Mike Doughty has kept pretty much to himself, quietly releasing discs with not a whit of outside help. Well, he's finally ready to see if he's still able to play with others, and this smart, sneakily rhythmic disc indicates he deserves a gold star in that category. The basic tenor of Haughty Melodic isn't all that different than that of early Soul Coughing -- albeit a little less dependent on quirky sonics, other than the outer-space soundscaping that accompanies "Busting Up a Starbucks." As the title of that ditty suggests, Doughty is still quick with a jab -- sometimes loving, sometimes less so -- at the ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
Since splitting with Soul Coughing a few years back, Mike Doughty has kept pretty much to himself, quietly releasing discs with not a whit of outside help. Well, he's finally ready to see if he's still able to play with others, and this smart, sneakily rhythmic disc indicates he deserves a gold star in that category. The basic tenor of Haughty Melodic isn't all that different than that of early Soul Coughing -- albeit a little less dependent on quirky sonics, other than the outer-space soundscaping that accompanies "Busting Up a Starbucks." As the title of that ditty suggests, Doughty is still quick with a jab -- sometimes loving, sometimes less so -- at the self-styled cognoscenti that bob and weave around him. Just as important, he's found a way to harness his mercurial way with a melody, letting a catchy tune -- like the sing-along-worthy "Madeline and Nine" -- work its magic without dipping it into an extra coat of cleverness. That same formula works wonders on the woozy waltz "Tremendous Brunettes," which features a guest appearance by fellow traveler Dave Matthews. Once an artist carves out a niche as clearly delineated as the one Doughty chiseled in the '90s, it takes a keen sense of balance to straddle its parameters without tumbling into the abyss. On Haughty Melodic, he perches on that precipice with good grace and a smile on his face.
All Music Guide - Sean Westergaard
It's been five years since the demise of Soul Coughing, and up to this point, Mike Doughty's solo releases have been solo in the truest sense of the word: He is literally the only musician present. Haughty Melodic is Doughty's first solo release to feature a band, making comparisons to his old band inevitable, but this really is a different beast. He's still an excellent wordsmith, and still favors acoustic bass and taut drums. His delivery is pretty much the same, but with a bit more emphasis on singing and melody. The big differences are that guitars are much more prominent than on any Soul Coughing releases, the lyrics have a more personal perspective, and the additional sounds of the album come from warmer sources like piano, Fender Rhodes and horns rather than a sampler. Several of the songs originally appeared on the live Smofe + Smang album, but those versions were quite sparse: just voice and acoustic guitar. Here, they get the full rock treatment. The sound can still be fairly thick, like on "Looking at the World From the Bottom of a Well" and "I Hear the Bells," but the acoustic guitar, piano and pedal steel of "White Lexus" are a far cry from anything Soul Coughing released. There are still some strange sonics, like at the end of "Busting Up a Starbucks," but the overall sound is very organic with many acoustic elements. Doughty's solo work shows an interesting development. Even with his rather drastic switch from hip-hop hipster beatnik to acoustic solo troubadour, Doughty retained a large part of his original fan base. Those folks will surely be pleased with Haughty Melodic, but even the people who didn't take to Doughty's solo career immediately owe it to themselves to check this one out.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/3/2005
  • Label: Ato Records
  • UPC: 880882153724
  • Catalog Number: 21537
  • Sales rank: 163,523

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Mike Doughty Primary Artist, Guitar, Drums, Vocals, Sampling
Dave Matthews Vocals, Guest Appearance
Dan Wilson Piano, Electric Bass, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Electric Piano, Background Vocals
Jane Scarpantoni Cello
John Munson Trombone, Double Bass, Upright Bass
Andy Thompson Drums
Jay Rodriguez Flute, Bass Clarinet, Baritone Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Tenor Flute
Ken Chastain Percussion
Eric Fawcett Drums
Joe Savage Pedal Steel Guitar
Shahzad Ismaily Piano, Electric Bass, Drums, Bass Guitar
Amy Jennings Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Dougie Bowne String Arrangements
Dan Wilson Composer, Producer, Engineer, Audio Production
Andy Thompson Engineer
Ken Chastain Sound Effects
Brad Kern Engineer
Vlado Meller Mastering
Mike Doughty Composer, Programming, Sound Effects
Emily Philpott Art Direction
Alfredo Genovese Cover Art
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Looking Forward!

    Looking forward to the new release. I was ecstatic to here Mike Doughty signed with ATO and will continue to enlighten us with his witty lyrics and intelligent metaphors that he's graced listeners with in the past! Cannot wait to hear the studio recordings of Madeleine & Nine, White Lexus, and Unsingable Name. Apparently Dave Matthews will be providing back-up vocals on Tremendous Brunettes too! Really glad to see that Mike Doughty is putting material out again, and expect that this album will serve the purpose of bolstering his reputation as one of the most intelligent and creative songsmiths in the business!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews