Re: jandek Digest, Vol 55, Issue 151 - Somebody in the Snow
miquelotjr at yahoo.co.uk
Thu Jul 12 02:40:48 PDT 2007
elegant & nostalgia-inducing, I'd definitely go for.
for the benefit of anyone who doesn't already know the album, this was my hasty 'zine review, a while back:
Somebody in the Snow (1990), Corwood 0757 08 / 10
Opening with Jandek murmuring "Awright… awright" into the microphone like the hippest of hip geeks, Somebody in the Snow could be the greatest multi-platinum, Grammy-winning Blues-Rawk album in the world ever… covered by a bunch of desperately ambitious nerds with dreams of flying their own private jet straight out of the basement. The second track builds to a guitar frenzy that Mark Knopfler or Eric Clapton would surely have fucked-up royally by playing note-perfect. Whoever the chanteuse is here, you find yourself falling in love with her in the space of 6 minutes for all the right reasons: she's the cute, slightly insecure girl who found herself a guitarist boyfriend, and really wants to please him, really wants to pass the audition and get out of Shelbyville (or wherever).
By Cut 6 though, the band are messing with the formula: "Om" is an eerie, yet in no way indulgent excursion into monastic chanting that has a possible precedent in "We Will Fall" off the first Stooges album (inasmuch as it's an unlikely centrepiece), but the Jandek Blues Explosion manage to keep their version under 10 minutes. Thereafter, the album resumes a rickety Blues, harking back to Captain Beefheart. Undoubtedly, this is the most convincingly up-beat Jandek record yet, and the culmination of the (sometimes self-indulgent) experiments that began the band-phase: there's a lot of weirdness here, but no filler. Somebody in the Snow even received the high accolade of a cryptic review by Bill Callahan (AKA Smog) saying it made him want to grow a beard...!
Towards the end of the album, SRS resumes singing with himself (like the Velvets a decade before, and Anti-Folk menagerie The Moldy Peaches a decade later), yet again rambling around New York's seedier districts amidst the clatter of drums. The Bowery gets namechecked, and Beacon Hill, then on track 10 a place I can't help but imagine as St. Mark's Place: "yeah (huhuh) I read about your bargain basement / at the corner of the street…" The penultimate cut explodes with some wild harmonica playing and a breathless, groovy Jandek, sounding like a one-man carnival; then, on the final track, Jandek's gives us a never repeated burst of "wah-bah-bam…" between cries of "Sit back! / It's eas-eh…!" After two minutes the tape cuts off abruptly, and you're left begging for more.
jandek-request at mylist.net wrote:
1. Somebody In the Snow (Alimarea Vasquez)
From: "Alimarea Vasquez" <beachdame125 at hotmail.com>
Subject: [Jandek] Somebody In the Snow
Date: Wed, 11 Jul 2007 17:43:55 -0400
To: jandek at mylist.net
I can't seem to take this one out of the player, I have been completely
sucked into it. It shows a strange elegance almost. It makes me feel
nostalgic for some reason. Does anyone get this feeling about this album?
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