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Home » The Breakdown: Animal Collective, Black Francis, Elvis Costello, Cloud Cult, Pinback, Pink Floyd, Qui

The Breakdown: Animal Collective, Black Francis, Elvis Costello, Cloud Cult, Pinback, Pink Floyd, Qui

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Qui – Love's Miracle: It's about friggin' time – ex-Jesus Lizard front man David Yow finally got off the couch he's been on for most of a decade and joined another band. Yow fans might be a bit surprised to hear the man actually singing on "Apartment," but he's doing so against a decidedly Jesus Lizard worthy backdrop. Seriously, do I need to describe this? Just hit their myspace page for some clips. Jesus Lizard fans are going to swarm the record stores this week to pick this up. I'm pretty anxious to hear their takes on Zappa's "Willie the Pimp" and Pink Floyd's "Echoes."

Now get out there and spend.

About Tom Johnson

  • Glen Boyd

    As if my wallet didn’t already hurt enough from having to shell out $170. for Neil Young tickets (the pre-sale is tommorrow — and thats just for my ticket).

    Oh well, such is the life of the umm, music “enthusiast” (I refuse to use the term “freak,” I’m already damaged enough).

    Thanx Tom. Yeah, thanx a bunch.


  • Mark Saleski

    dang, i have to admit to being totally behind the game with Frank Black. dunno why i don’t get the discs. it’s like with Bob Mould… i see one and think, eh, maybe next week. then, months down the road, i pick it up and wanna kill myself for wasting all of that time that i could have been listening.

  • Tom Johnson

    Glen, I feel your pain – maybe not for tickets, but just for the general quality and number of releases lately. I can’t keep up!

    Mark, I think, knowing your interests, you’d really like the Frank-Black-Francis discs I mentioned above. He’s a bit spottier through the rest of his solo career, but these three albums are super quality stuff. (Shhh – don’t tell the Pixies fans, but I like these three albums more than anything the Pixies did!)

  • zingzing

    “Both [liars and animal collective] make their minimal instrumental skills a focus of their music, letting their lack of experience guide them to sounds and styles that more trained musicians might never attempt.”

    ok. while i admire your taste (and it does seem to be good), i have to say that you seem to mistake both liars and animal collective for amateurs… Both groups are absolute instrumental wizards, and it doesn’t come from a lack of experience. quite the contrary actually.

    the guitarist from liars studied under lamont young. he may use minimalism, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t know any better. and the fact that he uses minimalism to create such maximalism (or whatever) should clue you into the fact that he knows exactly what he is doing. the drummer is likewise a wonder of timing and flourish and skill.

    animal collective… they may have a childlike innocence about them, but it doesn’t come from inexperience. one listen to “spirit they’re gone” ought to tell you just how amazing they are as players. seeing them live will only reinforce this notion, as it is obvious that they know exactly where they are going looooong before the audience does.

    i’m not knocking you or the idea that inexperience can lead to great things. being too good at your instrument can lead you into stagnation. but! it’s not always the case, and i think liars and animal collective are proof that sometimes virtuosity doesn’t lead down boring paths.

    so i’m just wondering why you think they don’t know how to play… when everything i’ve seen points squarely in the other direction…?

  • Mark Saleski

    i’m pretty sure he does it just to piss you off.

  • Tom Johnson

    I never said they were amateurs – you’re putting words, or a word, at least, in my mouth, zingzing. I am fully aware that people can be lacking in skills on instruments and yet still create magic. There are plenty of people who don’t realize this and think that what they take as random banging and clanging is just that – random – but who, given the same items to work with, couldn’t produce anything even remotely musical. We’ve both been here long enough that I’m sure you know that about me.

    As for being “taught by Lamont Young,” I’ll have to take your word for it as I can find no information about his students. Regardless, they play as if they have no actual recognizable instrument skills. I’m usually pretty good at picking out people who truly have skills-a-plenty and simply choose to not utilize them and those who really don’t, and I’m not getting that vibe from either band. I’m going to stick by my original assessment, but modify it especially for you: they aren’t particularly skilled instrument players but that doesn’t limit them from being good musicians who make intriguing music. I think you’re taking my original description of their skills waaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyy too seriously.

    On a side note, I’m not really quite sure how you learn minimalist skills from someone else. “Here, don’t play this”? Or, “You play this for a long time, and I’ll play something else”?

  • zingzing

    oh my. ok. lookie. i’m not taking you too seriously. it’s not that i wouldn’t… it’s just that i don’t think you put it the best way.

    minimalism is a technique, like anything else. when i say that the guy from liars studied under young, it doesn’t mean he learned how to play an instrument from him. it means he’s learning technique. someone who doesn’t know jack about playing certainly doesn’t study minimalism under lamont young. as far as my sources go, i got it directly from him, while i was very drunk, after a show in north carolina (during the they were wrong tour). i’m not one for dropping names, so you’ll just have to trust me on this one. i’ve never heard it in interviews or anywhere else… it must have been something he was doing at the time. it certainly showed up on their next album.

    all i’m saying is that the guy is an amazing musician and that even if he doesn’t play in any way that is traditionally amazing, well… he’s still amazing. and i know you know the difference. it’s just that i think he really can play very well… and that he knows exactly what he is doing.

    as far as animal collective goes… they are virtuosos. virtuosoes? virtuosi? whatever. they use their instruments in novel ways, that’s for sure, but that’s the best virtuosi…ty. it’s a funny word. can’t quite get my head around it.

    so, as far as the liars guy goes (both of them really), i can see where you can get the “minimal instrumental skills” bit… but i just don’t agree. i think he is restraining himself in some ways.

    but animal collective? damn man. their instrumental prowess is obvious. avey tare can play piano like a classical virtuoso. panda bear is an amazing drummer in almost any genre. anytime deacon plays, the sound manipulation gets ridiculous. their songs, compostionally and sound-wise, are just beyond sober belief.

    the only reason i take you to task for the statement is because i think it’s so wrong. i really wouldn’t bother if i thought you had no clue. i just think you are mistaken.

    there is my blathering. look back upon it and marvel at the amount.