Josh T Pearson cuts a lonely figure on the Anson Rooms far from modest stage, it’s an early indicator of what will turn out to be an evening of contradictions for the bearded cult hero. Best known as lead singer and guitarist of legendary Texan band Lift To Experience whose only release Texas Jerusalem Crossroads has to go down as not only a great concept album but one of the best albums of the last decade. Having spent nearly ten years below the radar, Pearson recently released the harrowing yet brilliant solo album Last Of The Country Gentlemen.
The Anson Rooms is a soulless shoebox of a venue and to add to this, the majority of the crowd have no clue as to who Josh T Pearson is, let alone the musical importance as to what they are witnessing. These elements combined result in something akin to a near religious experience marred by the inane and uninterested conversations of impatient Drive-By Truckers fans who have very little clue as to the significance of what they are witnessing. Understandable of course; as a support act there is a huge contrast between Pearsons haunting acoustic laments and the headliners country-rock anthems. And there is no blame apportioned to the unsuspecting crowd, it’s just a simple case of wrong place, wrong time.
Speaking of contrasts, the most striking aspect of Pearsons performance this evening was that between the top and bottom three strings of his acoustic guitar. His playing is masterful, creating deafening feedback whilst his little finger delicately picks out the most intricate of melodies. With only 45 minutes to play, the set list was sadly limited. Kicking off with Sweetheart I aint your Christ and concluding with Sorry with A song, it was far from an easy listening experience. He did an admirable job of filling the venue with sound but came unstuck during the all important quiet moments, which is why I think that he would be far better suited to a smaller venue housing a dedicated audience. regardless of all of this, Pearson stopped me in my tracks with a performance that not only upstaged the headliners but soared far above the uninterested portions of the crowd.
New Gang Gang Dance video for the track MindKilla surfaced today/yesterday. This jam seriously reminds me of the knife, which is cool for a while. Before this gets old, the song breaks down in to standard Gang Gang territory, off kilter vocals, weird synths, crisp beats and all that jazz. What’s not cool though is that the video looks like some dodgy Windows Media Player visuals. Awesome, awesome song though, very excited for the new album. Check it out:
Also well worth a look is this video of Rival Schools performing a stripped down acoustic version of Pedals cut Small Doses for NY’s BreakThru Radio. It’s a cool song anyway but hearing it performed at such close quarters lends an intimate feel to the intricacies of the song and particularly Schreifels’ vocals.
I had the most incredible experience hearing this track for the first time today whilst driving along a road that overlooks a breathtaking hilly landscape, this stunning view was ever so slightly shrouded in a thin layer of mist and at the precise moment that I happened to take in my surroundings, ‘Galactic Derelict’ was in full swing. Although this jam was most probably conceived and recorded in far more arid conditions, it provided the perfect backdrop for a spectacular slow-moving view. It’s a 7+ minute psych-guitar jam which has me pretty excited about the album ‘Beyond The 4th Door’ which is due to drop in March, the album title gives more away as to how this shit sounds than any sub-par adjectives I could come up with. Check the track out below:
Eternal Tapestry – Galactic Derelict MP3 (Right Click / Save As)
Further to my post yesterday, Tyler The Creator along with fellow OFWGKTA disciple Hodgy Beats completely nailed Fallon last night in what will probably go down in history as one of the most insane TV performances ever. The below video encompasses everything that I love about these guys, apart from the track ‘Sandwiches’ being a total winner, there were zombies, gnomes, The Roots, balaclavas and Mos Def losing all control of his tonsils. This shit is well, well worth checking out, made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up:
One last thing, I very recently had to give up tickets to see Janelle Monae live due to being out of the country. I managed to catch on TV last night her performance at the Grammys, ‘Cold War’ is one of my favourite album cuts and seeing her completely smash it in the face got me incredibly depressed. Again, worth watching:
The only re-union that matters in 2011 (so far) rolled in to New York to rip through ‘Emergency And I’ cuts ‘The City’ and ‘What Do You Want Me To Say’ for Jimmy Fallon. Check out the video below to see just how awesome this is going to be.