May 13, 2005


August 23rd will be a special day. A day when John Vanderslice's new disc, Pixel Revolt, will reaffirm and at the same time just may destroy your faith in music... other music, that is.

The songs, the lyrics, the selection of instruments, even the titles themselves... all have been slaved, discussed, and slept over, and on, by JV and a trusted cadre of fellow artists. People like John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats, The Silver Jews David Berman, cellist Erik Friedlander, and of course Tiny Telephone engineer and humble musician, Scott Solter. Resulting in such a beautiful and carefully laid out album that it illuminates the weaknesses in the other music I've been listening to lately.

The first taste offered of the album is the fifth track entitled, "Trance Manual". The song opening with an inhaling and exhaling note, a soughing wind lightened by ringing bells gives way to Vanderslice's superbly pitched vocal. His performance giving just a touch of blue to the tale of a foreign journalist seeking solace with an Iraqi prostitute (at least that's what I think it's about). Every so often, throughout the song, a touch of anxiety, or is it impatience, floats in when the churning cello of Erik Friedlander appears.

Here is an excerpt from an exclusive *Sixeyes interview with John Vanderslice that will be posted in the near future:

*6ize: Each time I hear "Dear Sarah Shu", I am struck by the line, "...regards from the other side of the teeth", is that your line or a 'Darnielle'? And also, in "Trance Manual", the chorus, "Come to me now / you are warming weather / come to me now / the kind that comes with sandbags along the river...". I love the mixed imagery of love, desire, spring, and a swollen river. Again, is this a Vanderslice or a Darnielle?"

John Vanderslice: The "regards" line is mine. The first half of the "Trance Manual" chorus is JD's, the second half is mine. Btw, "Trance (Manual)" was initially set in SF. JD (john darnielle) pushed me to exoticize the song and add another emotional dimension to it (the iraqi prostitute as a "flag of a dangerous nation").

+ Trance Manual [mp3]
*courtesy John Vanderslice

*JV will do a solo promo tour late this summer and then with a full band beginning October.

1 comment:

  1. Now if only there was a local music store where I could buy this . . .