For decades, Mark Kozelek was a cult figure among a serious type of poker-faced indie fan, first known for his work with his band Red House Painters, then a RIYL Modest Mouse and Matt Pond PA college-radio-station-CD-racks sideshow as Sun Kill Moon. Then, suddenly, his 2014 album Benji brought him unexpected headlines and widespread acclaim. Soon afterwards, though, various annoying and totally reprehensible public antics brought him bad PR. His lukewarm Benji follow-up Universal Themes last year didn’t win him back any of the fans he’d lost.
Benji and Kozelek’s subsequent work find him lost in the quotidian, proper-noun-filled details of his own experience, like a Townes van Zandt-obsessed Karl Ove Knausgård. He talks about watching Led Zeppelin concerts and life on the road in between recalling the death of as many acquaintances, family members, and friends as we can think of. The hyperspecific, rambling style has always seemed ripe for parody, so it’s almost surprising a Kozelek send-up this practiced hasn’t arisen sooner.
Posted to the Bandcamp of user “sunkillmoonalbum8,” fake Mark Kozelek-billed track “I Watched The Movie The Revenant With Leo DiCaprio” (from the three-song EP Under the Canopy) comes right in time for Oscar season. Parodying Kozelek and Iñárritu in one fell swoop is a brazen and welcome way to shit on two of the most hyped and irritating “auteur genius” figures of the past several years. This song gets Kozelek’s slurred, somehow hollow intonation and overstuffed phrasing exactly right, and even exaggerates his erratic fingerpicked guitar style and dramatic doubled vocals to humorous effect.
“It reminded me of that scene from The Revenant when Leo DiCaprio said something I can’t remember because I’m tired from a really long day I had, but it was beautiful. …” Exactly, that’s our Mark. Fake Kozelek goes on to describe Keith Moon’s drumming, record stores, his experiences watching Herzog movies, and paleo diets. Ian Curtis and Lou Reed die at the end.
Listen to this whole thing.