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Archives: Foreverandevernomore

 

 

 

The Conviviality of Solitary Games

 

When it comes to autumn, and winter still months, or a cover, away, journalists and music lovers take a deep breath looking at the records (so far) that do not only turn to be part of the annual magic list, but have the potential of becoming life‘s company. In regards to song albums, I have the luck to now have heard my stunning „quartet of song albums“ in its entirety, everyone of them being a challenge and a reward.

 

September songs, October songs, autumnal they all are in certain ways. And lifers, for sure. IMO. And though I am obliged to keep my reviews unwritten and unpublished till the week before the albums‘ release, it is easy to name them, realizing some quite great songworks didn‘t make it to my dozen albums of 2022. But here, the soulfood collection, a labour of love each of them. 

 

One thought beforehand: don‘t believe anyone telling you these albums are too far out and not easy to approach. The only requirement: open ears, time, time, time. And quietness. And not thinking of the good old 70‘s! No jukeboxes around anyway! Bill Callahan‘s work may be his quietest of all, but a whole lot is going on between acoustic strumming, words delivered with measurance, and delicate arrangements – all flirting with the elemental, and reaching out for the deep.

 

Lambchop‘s album (the double vinyl comes along orange-marbled) may even appear stranger than the enigmatic brilliance of   „Showtunes“, but it is an equally shining star. More cinemascope, but the same degree of little gestures, discreet offerings, slow motion observations. Profound music of highest order, and food for thought.

 


As is Brian Eno‘s trip to the stars, not forgetting all things lost in the fire of our lives (as far as we can remember). Sometimes, from a distance, everything (losses first, and hands still to hold) falls into place.  An hour of true vibrations! No catchy songs, no singalongs, no fairytale searches of parallel worlds, no hooks, no future evergreens, oh, hold on, in their own peculiar way these songs which could be coined as modern day lamentations, a collection of future „everblues“ at least, striking quite a special, different note, corner in Brian Eno‘s song life. The album is haunting, uncanny, ethereal, anti-nostalgic, lost in space, and, simply said, beautiful in a dark way.

 

And, the only work available today and for some time now, waiting for you at your local record store, is the „retro existential wonderland“ of Father John Misty‘s double album „Chloé and The Next 20th Century“. Four impressive song albums in a row, and a great companion to it, another autumnal album without songs sung or spoken, Dutch pianist Wolfert Brederode‘s awesome „Ruins and Remnants“, coming later this year, a lifer, too, with piano, percussion, a string quartet. And Manfred Eicher.

 

Perhaps the reason I was never a real fan of Roxy Music was they had the wrong singer. This, of course being an offense for Roxy Music die-hards, may raise eyebrows. In hindsight I would have preferred Eno taking center age on the first two albums, but then again, with a voice not perfectly suited for stadium rock, the band might only have gained underground status, who the fuck knows, you can‘t rewrite history. So, when „For Your Pleasure“ was circling our tables in school, I only became mildly interested. (Ferry did a great job, no doubt, but I was looking for something else. Paradoxically, my favourite Roxy album, one I really liked, was „Stranded“, the first without Eno.) This all changed on a rainy December day 1975 in Würzburg, when my first copy of an Eno album blocked my record player for weeks, „Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy)“. The songs, their sonic textures, their singing voice, their lyrics had an entrancing quality, and I knew from the start, I had found another favourite musician – and singer. Here‘s an interview with Brian (Detroit, 1974 – the deep static mix).


As time goes by. Now, after those other, quite rare song- or song-related albums (all a class of their own), Here Come The Warm Jets“, „Another Green World“, „Before and After Science“ (close the 70‘s at this point), „Wrong Way Up“ (with Cale), „Drawn From Life“ (with Schwalm), „Another Day On Earth“, „Someday World“ (with Hyde), and „The Ship“ (close the next four decades at this point), here we will have another song cycle, to be released on October 14, „Foreverandeevernomore“ – no catchy songs, no singalongs, no fairytale searches of parallel worlds, no hooks, no future evergreens, oh, hold on, in their own peculiar way these songs which could be coined as modern day lamentations, may contain a collection of future „everblues“ at least, striking quite a special, different note, corner, space, in Brian Eno‘s song life. The album is a challenge, haunting, uncanny, ethereal, anti-nostalgic, lost in space, beautiful in a dark way, and a fantastic melting of ambient and song worlds. Even Scott Walker, I guess, would love it in his tower of song, Leonard anyway. (My German review will be posted in the days of release, as will a second review of mine, in English language, on the same day. Two reviews, each of them coming from a differerent angle.)

 


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