Longtime Boing Boing friend Richard Metzger of Dangerous Minds turned me on to Jonathan Wilson a couple years ago, and I became an instant fan. He slipped me a copy of Wilson's new album, "Fanfare," before its release date--I am obsessed with it.
I agree with Metzger: best rock and roll album of the year. "No competition, nothing else even comes close," he rightly writes. Everyone else, put down your guitars and mothball your drums, it's over.
Metzger can write about music better than anyone I know, so I'm just going to share a little of his Dangerous Minds review here:
Fanfare’s seven-minute-long title track opener begins with the sound of baby chicks being fed through an Echoplex tape delay unit and builds into a tubular bell-laden, multi-layered tone poem from the artist meant to channel the perfect love song through his piano. As a declaration of intent, it’s a powerful statement. Plus the rest of the album has to live up to this. Talk about setting the bar high for yourself.
“From the initial idea of the record, I knew I wanted a concert Steinway piano to be the centerpiece—the beating heart—of Fanfare, Wilson told me. “So naturally we found a guy on Craigslist with one for sale and bargained with him to let us rent it for the entire session.”
“I was going for this sort of ‘widescreen’ sound, a blown out vista. I wanted strings, horns, bells, vibes, voices, solos, improvisation and a full orchestra on some of the tunes… I didn’t just want ‘a’ drum sound, I wanted it to sound like Thor’s snare sound, stuff like that. Having that 9-foot Steinway was central to achieving the sound that I wanted.” Fanfare was recorded to 2” analog tape and then mixed down to ½ inch tape at Jackson’s Browne’s Groove Masters studio in Santa Monica through a Neve 8078 analog console. The recording used a live echo chamber extensively.
Read the full Metzger review here, with some embedded audio. Then go buy the record.
I have seen Jonathan Wilson perform live, and you should too. He's touring. If he's anywhere near you, trust me, just go. What an amazing artist.
Jonathan Wilson, online: Facebook, Twitter, web, Soundcloud, Amazon. Buy the physical thing, not just the download! The lusciously NSFW centerfold by Kii Arens, who also did the cover art below, is just gorgeous.
In 1979, Roger Mainwood, just out of the Royal College of Art, created this wonderfully trippy animation for Kraftwerk’s “Autobahn.” It was a commission from the band’s record company but Kraftwerk had no input on the film, and Mainwood says he’s unsure if they even saw it. The fan site KraftwerkOnline tracked down Mainwood and […]
Pixelsynth is a lovely and compelling Web app by Olivia Jack that enables you to easily turn your own images into weird electronic music and tweak the tones (and graphics) in real time. PIXELSYNTH (via Waxy)
On this day, May 23, in 1934, police killed infamous outlaw couple Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow outside of Sailes, Louisiana. Several weeks before they were killed, Parker penned a poem titled “The Trail’s End” that became the basis for “Bonnie and Clyde,” a beautiful French-language song that Serge Gainsbourg wrote and performed with Brigitte […]
Jared Sinclair developed the RSS reader app Unread, which made $10,000 in its first 24 hours on the iOS market. And we’ve all heard the story of Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen, whose creation was reportedly earning $50,000 a day at the height of its 2013 explosion. While those are rare examples, they’re also testament to the […]
If you or your company’s IT system are besieged by black hat cyber attacks, an ethical hacker might be all that stands between crippling damage and a company’s long-term prosperity. It’s no wonder that the market for IT security specialists is exploding. Certification is the key – so learn the tenets of ethical hacking and get […]
Your laptop and mobile devices are top of the line…so why are you trotting out that raggedy decades-old suitcase when you go somewhere? Time to up your travel game with a complete 5-piece Herschel Travel Luggage bundle…and we’ll even give it to you for free!Of course, you’ve got to win the Ultimate Herschel Travel Bundle […]