Murder by Death’s “Natural Pearl” Is Sweet, Not Scary


If the name Murder by Death sounds a little intense, don’t be frightened away. The Indiana-based Americana group likes to play with minor keys and haunting cello melodies, but that’s about as spooky as things get.

In fact, on “Natural Pearl” from their upcoming album Big Dark Love, the band lets their love light shine. Singer Adam Turla channels a father’s unspoiled devotion to his one and only little girl.

“I think the idea is that the way a parent sees a child is so positive and full of love, like they couldn’t see anything false in their child,” Turla tells CMT Edge via email. “The song is about the (wonderful) blindness of parental love, in all its overbearing glory.”

A quick, unrelenting rhythm evokes the frantic pace of raising a child and watching her grow, while playful steel guitar and prickly cello lines play off each other in waves. Because the pride in his voice seems so genuine as he offers up fatherly wisdom, it’s almost hard to believe Turla doesn’t have kids of his own.

“I immediately responded to the protective feeling of the lyrics, and we worked a few of the words around to have a slightly overbearing feeling,” he says. “Just tried to remember that wonderful kind of love we’ve been lucky enough to receive.”

Big Dark Love comes out Feb. 3, featuring a few more unorthodox approaches to the title subject — the most powerful and diverse of emotions. Check out the CMT Edge premiere of Murder by Death’s “Natural Pearl,” and the dates on their spring tour.