Daniel Romano’s Outfit
How Ill Thy World Is Ordered
You’ve Changed Records
There are few artists as prolific in this day and age as Daniel Romano, and his latest record doesn’t disappoint. Featuring The Outfit, How Ill Thy World Is Ordered is Romano’s ninth album this year. The music is rich with effortless poetic musings. It serves as a harsh social critique yet the instrumentation provides a pleasant sonic contradiction to the dystopian lyrics.
The album opens with distorted, circus-like chaos, diving straight into Romano’s mind. He invites you to see what he sees; to take on the perception as your own, all the while floating in a dream-like state. “Rat Without a Tale” is the perfect opener for the album, setting a tone reminiscent of 60’s psych and portraying a dark perspective on the toxicities in our current environment. It features blatant questioning of our reality, softened with whimsical instrumentation and honeyed harmonization. The same sentiment is carried through in the title track “How Ill Thy World is Ordered”, which contends with society’s obsession with monetary wealth. It serves as a warning that when we meet our end, our insatiable greed will be of no comfort as “money never mourns”. The music once again descends into a disorienting clash of warped instruments; these interludes are frequent throughout the album.
The jaded two-part “Joys Too Often Hollow” harkens back to Romano’s country roots and speaks of fear of the future and clinging to happiness in memories. It ends, however, in earnest crescendo; in a resolution to cut ties with the past which lulls the listener into comforted acceptance. “Amaretto and Coke” winds everything down to a subdued close. After a laundry list of sobering thoughts, it’s time to sit back, have a drink and take it all in.
An album so laden in social criticism could not be timelier, and Romano’s articulate poetry provokes imagery in a uniquely eloquent and sophisticated manner. Despite its on-the-nose dystopian views and moments of disparity, the album provides a strong sense of comfort we are all in need of at the moment.
SPILL ALBUM REVIEW: DANIEL ROMANO’S OUTFIT – HOW ILL THY WORLD IS ORDERED