For the forthcoming Wooden Shjips album, Back to Land, Ripley Johnson and Omar Ahsanuddin packed up and moved to Oregon with the intention of recording their first set of tracks outside of the Bay Area. With the lush climate and natural surroundings inspiring their musical direction, the pair tapped into a brighter, more earthy sound without diverting the course of their space-psych core. A distinctly brighter flag flies throughout the album’s 8 tracks, but at no point does that equate to less distortion, fewer stretched-out modal jams or fewer measures of spiraling space-rock. Instead, what was born on their previous album West comes into full bloom on Back to Land in the form of the Shjips’ most detailed and spacious recordings to date. An acoustic version of the album’s sledge-y rock anthem “These Shadows,” available as a single or pre-order bonus track, can be heard below.
Boston musician Glenn Jones is a longtime student of the so-called American Primitive school of acoustic steel guitarists, one that includes artists such as John Fahey, Robbie Basho and so on. Playing guitar since the age of 14, Jones formed his first psych-rock band, Cul de Sac, in 1989 and went on to perform with the group for 20 years with artists including Can’s Damo Suzuki and Fahey himself. In 2004, he released his first album of acoustic guitar instrumentals, titled This Is the Wind That Blows It Out, and established himself as a solo artist on tour alongside the late Jack Rose. Following two more solo releases of mostly acoustic material, Jones will release his third album in that vein, My Garden State, on Thrill Jockey next month. Written in the New Jersey home where Jones’ family moved in 1966, while he was caring for his mother who suffers from Alzheimer’s, the gentle finger-picked songs carry the emotional weight of this time through a collection of reflective instrumental stories.
White Hills will release their fifth album later this year, but in the meantime Immune Recordings has released the burner “Eye to Eye,” along with a selection of previously recorded tracks, on vinyl for the very first time. Abstractions & Mutations was originally released in 2007 as a tour only CD-r for a UK tour White Hills did with Spiritualized guitarist Tony “Døggen” Foster’s solo band DØGNTANK. The album contains both studio and rehearsal recordings from the very inception of this full band version of White Hills. Most tracks were recorded in one take and no overdubs were used. Order Abstractions & Mutations via Immune Recordings.
“Living Lens” is a cut off New York sound art duo Mountains’ new album, Centralia, out today on Thrill Jockey. The duo, consisting of of Koen Holtkamp and Brendon Anderegg, approached the album layer by layer, combining purely-acoustic recordings with purely-electronic sounds rather than using electronics to manipulate acoustic source material. Guitar, cello, organs, electric piano et al are seamlessly combined with modular electronics, synthesizers and other sound sources to create an engrossing, ambient listening experience. Watch the video for “Living Lens” below or download/stream the track here.
The good folks at Thrill Jockey have passed along the latest video from Portland psych ensemble Eternal Tapestry. Accompanying new song “Apocalypse Dream,” the video—a near virtual psychedelic Sega Genesis trip—was crafted by guitarist Nick Bindeman from live footage of the band shot by Anton Long and other sci-fi imagery. Eternal Tapestry’s forthcoming album, A World Out of Time, comes out November 13th on Thrill Jockey and it’s full of jams.
On September 13, San Francisco based outfit Barn Owl will release a new full length called Lost in the Glare on Thrill Jockey. Below, you can stream/download “Turiya,” a four minute, desert-psych drone included on the new LP. Also check out the previously released “Shadowland.”