A new weekly feature from Far Out Magazine see’s Timothy Mudd, our man in the States, give a monthly update from the West Coast.
Timothy’s feature will follow his move from place to place and spending his time in San Diego, LA and Seattle, he’ll stopping off at music venues along the way. Here, in his first episode, we follow him up the coast:
NOTES FROM THE WEST DESK
Moving from one home to another is widely regarded as one of the top three most stressful things a person can go through. Having just moved my family 1250 miles from San Diego, California to Seattle, Washington, I can attest truth in this fact. In a word, ‘Craziness.’
Like most days my happy place could be found between the headphones, but I did notice my musical choices were a little more schizophrenic than usual.
Leaving a place I’ve called home for the better part of seventeen years was cause for some heavy introspection: Suicide Songs, the latest from Manchester’s MONEY soothed the grief in fantastic fashion, while proving a perfect soundtrack for cruising north through California’s grapevine desert landscape.
Texas native Emily Wells also fit nicely in the van with Promise, her eighth collection of songs, but first for Portland’s upstart Lefse Records. This one is a slow burner of torch songs that provided solid company no matter the time of day. Here’s the one that really crept up on me though: case/lang/veirs a collaboration between veteran songwriters Neko Case, K.D. Lang and Laura Veirs. Projects of this magnitude often go so wrong, but this? So right.
Whether you’re a fan of an individual contributor’s catalogue or just discovering these national treasures through this album, be prepared for a little genre-hopping within the fourteen pristine tracks, but you should ultimately discover a very rewarding listen.
As we sauntered north, our grief turned to excitement, and the music evolved with the mood. Spencer Krug’s Moonface moniker is enjoying a second date with Finnish Krautrock enthusiasts Sinaai and there’s definitely some under the shirt action happening.
My Best Human Face is arguably among the best output for both artists, with ‘Ugly Flower, Pretty Vase’ an unlikely contender for song of the summer, thanks to some face-melting bass riffs and a chorus that recalls a feeling of humid nights and teenage flings that we somehow never forget.
Talking of infinite teenage memories, Mitski revisits hers with Puberty 2, a raw and vital collection of songs that comfortably places the New York performer in a circle of peers that include PJ Harvey, Torres and Annie Clark. Once you arrive at your new home, it’s never as perfect as you’d like. Boxes are falling, belongings are breaking and the moving stress hits fever pitch. For this? Fuck it—go nuts.
Warm into crazy with the crushing guitars of A Hermitage, the second full-length from South Korean post-rockers Jambinai. And if you feel like you may have somehow missed prolific punk protagonist Ty Segall’s monthly output, look a little closer under his latest GØGGS pseudonym—30 minutes of pure garage punk oblivion that your won’t regret, lest forget.
While the clubs feel like hot yoga on a good day and the kids are pussing-out on the festival grounds, live music the right way is a little quiet of late, but what do I know? I’ve been busy moving.
If all this California talk is getting your imagination going, quash the romanticism with a journey through the distorted experience of Pro Skateboarder-turned Contemporary Artist Ed Templeton.
The Huntington Beach native has a few thoughts on beach life in the Southland that you really should pay attention to.
We’ll be checking-in with James Blake, Parquet Courts, Girl Band, Caveman, Sia and—yes—the indomitable Dolly Parton.
Stay thirsty y’all.