Monday, November 3, 2008

Quick hitters:: J Tillman Vacilando Territory Blues

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It’s not too often you will hear me openly plead for people to buy a record when it gets released. Sure, 99% of the artists we talk about could use every cent you could offer them, but I know people who read blogs don’t really “buy” records very often in this day in age.

So this may fall on deaf ears, but if you have an extra $10.00 bucks lying around after you vote tomorrow (or if you live up here in Canada, after you prepare your couch - for all the Democrats that threaten to move up here - just in case the Republicans pull out another 4 years), it would be well spent on the new J Tillman record, Vacilando Territory Blues.

The vinyl is coming out in January, but in all honesty, this is my favorite Tillman effort yet (which if you search the site for my other reviews, says a lot) and definitely an album worth shelling out a few bucks for the advance digital copy. I don’t want to review it – and won’t – simply because he’s one of the few artists whose music I treasure and analyzing it cheapens the affair for me.

A few quick thoughts - The record is an amazing juxtaposition of the solitary echoes of J’s voice and strums bouncing off the walls in an empty room, delicate (somewhat shocking) harmonies and sonic exploration. The poppy piano, horns and percussion that fill out Steel on Steel are as powerful as the simple strums that make up the more traditional Tillman sounding tracks like Master's House or James Blues. Long time fans will be blown away by the arrangement she throws in on tracks like New Imperial Grand Blues or the tear jerking, 7-minute epic Barter Blues and still embrace the desolate emotion of Vessels.

Every time you hear J talk about his future, it’s uncertain. His music, the lifestyle, seems to be taking a toll on him and knowing this could be his last record is as good a reason as any to pick it up. But even if he is to pen 10 more, Vacilando Territory Blues might end up being the best he record he ever puts out.

Posted at 2:07 PM by ack :: 2 comments

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At 4:30 PM, Blogger alt-gramma did sayeth:

I definitely will be buying this. Mr. Tillman is one of my favorites. I'm glad you think so too.


At 9:36 PM, Anonymous Smansmith did sayeth:

hear hear.


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