Buried Treasures: Paw – Death to Traitors
The first album ever to “speak to me” was Death to Traitors by Paw. I was in my early teens at the time, doing the Nirvana thing, the Weezer Blue Album thing, the Siamese Dream thing, etc. Kurt Cobain had just committed suicide. Prior to that, the only other musician death that hit close to my musical home was Def Leppard’s Steve Clark. I became more fascinated by Nirvana music, and equally by the aura of Kurt Cobain. I was a kid. Processing and understanding all of it was a little over my head at the time.
On my way home from school, I picked up a rock magazine and one of the writers was touting this band Paw to be the next Nirvana. They had one album out at the time, Dragline, and one that just came out called Death to Traitors. I immediately went to a used record store and purchased the latter. Getting back to the “speak to me” comment above, it wasn’t this big emotional thing. It was more on a poetic level. Mark Hennessy’s vocals were very grunge, very “I just gargled with glass.” The lyrics, the poetic storytelling, the voice – everything was there. I remember listening to every word, and while the subject matter was mainly dark and hopeless, it was uplifting in a way I can’t explain.
I’ve mentioned Paw to people for years. These videos don’t do the band or this album justice. If you were even remotely a fan of Nirvana, you’re going to love Paw. It’s a bit of a deeper listen. I hope you enjoy what you hear.