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Originally released in 2003 on Jetset Records. One time only vinyl re-press of this cult classic. An album as good as Ghosts of the Great Highway should never go out of print. Ghosts continues-- even fine-tunes-- the work Kozelek did with his former band, Red House Painters. These songs are virtuously stoic Americana-- all shimmery guitars, measured tempos, malevolent moods, and wandering melodies. His voice sounds like Neil Young's, especially in the effortlessness with which he hits the high notes then returns to a lower, earthier texture.
Ghosts is a travelogue of sorts, speeding through the Midwest and the West; in this sense, it's the male equivalent to Lucinda Williams' Car Wheels on a Gravel Road, especially in the imperfect mirroring of physical terrain and emotional geography. The band Kozelek assembled for Ghosts-- Anthony Koutsos (Red House Painters), Tim Mooney (American Music Club), and Geoff Stanfield (Black Lab), along with a few guests-- ably but subtly bolster his lyrics and vocals, generating a steady clip that never flags. The result is an album as hypnotic as highway divider lines whizzing past. Includes original bonus track "Gentle Moon (Acoustic).
LP 1 1. Glenn Tipton 2. Carry Me Ohio 3. Salvador Sanchez 4. Last Tide 5. Floating 6. Gentle Moon 7. Lily And Parrots
LP 2 1. Duk Koo Kim 2. Sí, Paloma 3. Pancho Villa 4. Gentle Moon (Acoustic)
Sun Kil Moon
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The sound movement on GHOST TROPIC will seem sudden to some; without warning. To others, it'll seem a very logical step in a very foreign direction. On its fifth proper full-length, Songs: Ohia has stepped outside the box and has delivered its most subtle record of fantastic depth to date. Indeed this is the most cohesive and album-like Songs: Ohia has ever been. The eight songs on the record sprawl out into one another, telling one long sonic tale, allowing very little room for chapter breaks or piss stops. In this regard, Lou Reed's moody classic BERLIN comes to mind as a worthy fore-bearer. But it's the strange ethnic flavor in which GHOST TROPIC is steeped that makes it stand apart from its predecessors, albums which were all received as crossing guards for the Great American lost highway. Surely this album will leave those expecting such fare scratching their heads. Blending the electro-acoustic minimalism of the David Bowie and Brian Eno Trilogy with the percussive worldliness of Tom Waits' SWORDFISHTROMBONES, the group seems to hop the globe from a British Isles folk rock influence to an Ennio Morricone-like Spaghetti Western feel to the faintest echoes of the Chinese Classical ringing like a death murmur in the distance. And the songs, they build in a slow, unconscious manner, pulsing with an intensity, but never betraying their most simple core with too much instrumentation or calculated progression. Yea! GHOST TROPIC is the first album which reveals Songs: Ohia's own Tropicalia Blues in full bloom.
Lightning Risked It All Body Burned Away No Limits on the Words Ghost Tropic Ocean's Nerves Not Just a Ghost's Heart Ghost Tropic Incantation
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The album, due for release through Downtown Records on 16 April marks a huge departure for the group sonically. Founder and songwriter Dexter Tortoriello told us last year that it's very much a record that tells a story: "I had this idea to do a concept album about this guy walking across the country to find his wife after a nuclear disaster occurs. The idea is that everyone in the western part of the country has been exposed to a great deal of radiation and is dying off, some more slowly than others. The man is trying to find his wife, not so they can survive together, but so they can die together."
Although built up of many samples, most of which were recorded "inside abandoned houses and along the deserted highways and ghost towns of the Mojave Desert", fans can expect a more explorative and fully formed 'band' sound than previous material.
1 Beginnings 2 Beauty Surrounds 3 Big Light
4 Tired Moon
6 Carrion 7 What We Lost
8 Smoke Signals
10 Bloom 11 Quiet Darkness
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Since 1997, John K. Samson has written four acclaimed albums with The Weakerthans. Provincial, Samsons first solo release began with a simple idea: to explore four different roads in Manitoba, the Canadian province where Samson lives. They're the places I kept going back to. Samson talked to relatives, friends and strangers; he visited archives, a tuberculosis sanatorium turned RV park and a forgotten cemetery.
The result is this collection of evocative songs, an album that fits beside Bruce Springsteens Nebraska, Sun Kil Moons Ghosts Of The Great Highway and Mountain Goats Tallahassee. While the teenage craving of Cruise Night recalls the Cars' Stop Error and invokes Bach; for When I Write my Masters Thesis, Samsons inspiration was all jukebox serendipity, Bob Dylans When I Paint My Masterpiece, sailing out from the corner of a Yukon dive-bar. Provincial is a record full of fierce, tuneful and vivid stories.
1. Highway 1 East 2. Heart of the Continent 3. Cruise Night 4. Grace General 5. When I Write My Master's Thesis 6. Letter in Icelandic from the Ninette San 7. Longitudinal Centre 8. www.ipetitions.com/petition/rivertonrifle 9. The Last And 10. Stop Error 11. Highway 1 West 12. Taps Reversed
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