THESE SUSPENDED THINGS
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.
Much of Guitar & Voice is unlike "Dull Lights". "Sliabh Aughty" is an eight-minute psychdelic jam, distortion singing in the wind: like Hendrix's spectral American flag but freer, jaggeder, caught in ozone and gulf stream, bedroom wah-wah. And four more songs - almost half the record - consists of bowed guitar instrumentals. These are stern, gorgeous things. The guitar(s) sound more like a viola de gamba, a Hardanger fiddle, than any beat-up old strummer. Rough and droning, baroque, these tracks feel wide and tall in ways that no pop music can; they transform Guitar & Voice from a collection of tunes into a kind of concerto, a whole roaming work.
Unfortunately I cannot just give you all of Guitar & Voice. You must order it from Constellation.
But they let me give you "Dull Lights", so let me talk about "Dull Lights", this music that evokes Perri, Chet Baker, recent PJ Harvey, Little Wings, Richard Youngs, Arthur Russell, Willie Nelson, Derek Bailey, Hoagy Carmichael and on & on. It is a song of heartache, bruise, trampled love. Ambivalence that isn't. I wouldn't mind / if everything I know / would spring and fall, Chenaux sings, low-high.
If you leave, things may happen differentlyThe song's title rises up in unexpected gaps, end-of-lines. All the lyrics seem so bruised, blood running thin circuits underneath. Whereas much of the record feels very much like an inside-music, songs from a room, "Dull Lights" is too big for that. Exterior, unwalled, with horizon and air. Civilizations will rise and fall while Chenaux sings his song. Things will be demolished. His fingers dance on strings - a guitar that summons summer nights, spanish valleys, dusty bus-stops - and yet there's always that far, listening drone. Someone just out of picture. A waiting face. An answer that won't be hurried.
This is unquestionably one of the best albums of 2012. (Buy.)Posted by Sean at February 23, 2012 11:26 AM
Love it.Posted by blahdeedah at February 24, 2012 3:20 AM
Bravo.Posted by Andy at February 29, 2012 8:22 PM