Mount Eerie - No Flashlight

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Doesanyone have any info on Phil's new album "No Flashlight"?
I heard it's supposed to come out in August.

Judging by the live versions of a few new songs it may well be the the best Microphones / Mount Eerie album yet.

Marc-, Tuesday, 31 May 2005 17:41 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

being the best Mount Eerie album yet won't be too difficult of a task to pull off.

jonviachicago, Tuesday, 31 May 2005 17:48 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

no mention of it in the last update i got from K, but the last update didn't say much about anything if i recall.

b b, Tuesday, 31 May 2005 17:50 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

The No Flashlight songs sounded great live, very concise, lyrics that jumped out at me after hearing them only twice. Can't wait.

Went to his art show in Seattle last Thursday. The subject was 'Utopia' (actually some long phrase with that in it but I can't remember) and his work was fascinating: letters and photographs and hand-drawn covers and handwritten lyrics and sheet music, hundreds of pieces of musical ephemera. He spoke for a while about the stuff and told some stories. Quite a interesting and likeable character. Should have asked him when the record was coming out.

jergins (jergins), Tuesday, 31 May 2005 20:04 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

Do you have the tracklist for it?

Marc-, Tuesday, 31 May 2005 21:42 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

just hearing about this has made my day. i'm trying to imagine how excited i'll be when it actually comes out.

jonathan - stl (jonathan - stl), Wednesday, 1 June 2005 00:25 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
i heard something about it being released as a CD/Vinyl so you get both formats even if you just want one or something like that.

That One Guy (That One Guy), Monday, 11 July 2005 14:45 (twelve years ago) Permalink

that should say "CD/Vinyl Package"

That One Guy (That One Guy), Monday, 11 July 2005 15:03 (twelve years ago) Permalink

So it's leaked. The first track's mesmerizing, minimal and without strong melody. The rest is the same, but (on first listen) not as good. Much more Talk Talk/Mark Hollis than Sebadoh, and it sounds more like early Microphones than Mt Eerie.

sean gramophone (Sean M), Monday, 11 July 2005 15:57 (twelve years ago) Permalink

not neccesarily a bad thing, i still love The Glow Pt.2. when i saw him live earlier this year he was great, kinda clumsy in a charming way and a great guitarplayer

Rizz (Rizz), Monday, 11 July 2005 16:09 (twelve years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
When does this come out?

Christopher Costello (CGC), Monday, 15 August 2005 21:35 (twelve years ago) Permalink


cutty (mcutt), Monday, 15 August 2005 21:53 (twelve years ago) Permalink

is it going to be available in stores?

Christopher Costello (CGC), Monday, 15 August 2005 21:54 (twelve years ago) Permalink

god the pitchfork review is so predictable and retarded.

Kevin Erickson, Wednesday, 17 August 2005 00:18 (twelve years ago) Permalink

god the pitchfork review is so predictable and retarded.

Well, dude makes a point, Elverum's not so progressive. I don't agree with the 5, though. seems like a moody 5.
You put this shit in surround sound, it's definitely serene, paints an awesome backdrop.

mox twelve (Mox twleve), Wednesday, 17 August 2005 03:45 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I'd give this record a 6. It's not superb, it's not terrible, it's just there, and that isn't enough.

Raymond Cummings (Raymond Cummings), Wednesday, 17 August 2005 10:57 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I thought it was a pretty excellent review, actually. Makes up for the make-me-puke Wooden Wand piece from Monday.

sean gramophone (Sean M), Wednesday, 17 August 2005 10:58 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Yeah, the No Flashlight review really hit the nail on the head.

Haven’t read the Wooden Wand review yet, but I thought the 8.0 was about right.

Raymond Cummings (Raymond Cummings), Wednesday, 17 August 2005 12:01 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Haven’t read the Wooden Wand review yet, but I thought the 8.0 was about right.

I think a 1.0 would be about right. Talk about an album of shit with nimrods running around it coo'ing "wowzers! psych folk!"

sean gramophone (Sean M), Wednesday, 17 August 2005 13:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

eleven years pass...

anybody know how the show in Anacortes went last week? I know Phil implored everyone not to come after it got picked up and publicized, just curious if anyone was there to do a write up or record it...

flappy bird, Friday, 13 January 2017 18:33 (one year ago) Permalink

this is probably going to be a depressing listen

Dinsdale, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 15:04 (one year ago) Permalink

That is devastating

Evan R, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 15:37 (one year ago) Permalink

Oh god this backstory

Mount Eerie, the longstanding musical outlet of Phil Elverum, has announced the release of A Crow Looked At Me. It will be released on Elverum’s label P.W. Elverum & Sun on March 24th 2017. The album is a deeply personal and unflinchingly honest reaction to the death of Elverum’s wife, the artist Geneviève Castrée, last year. He has shared “Real Death,” a candid expression of stark domestic grief that is unlike anything else in the Mount Eerie discography.

Elverum has shared the following statement about why he made A Crow Looked At Me, and why he is sharing it with the world:

“Why share this much? Why open up like this? Why tell you, stranger, about these personal moments, the devastation and the hanging love? Our little family bubble was so sacred for so long. We carefully held it behind a curtain of privacy when we’d go out and do our art and music selves, too special to share, especially in our hyper-shared imbalanced times. Then we had a baby and this barrier felt even more important. (I still don’t want to tell you our daughter’s name.) In May 2015 they told us Geneviève had a surprise bad cancer, advanced pancreatic, and the ground opened up. ‘What matters now?’ we thought. Then on July 9th 2016 she died at home and I belonged to nobody anymore. My internal moments felt like public property. The idea that I could have a self or personal preferences or songs eroded down into an absurd old idea leftover from a more self-indulgent time before I was a hospital-driver, a caregiver, a child-raiser, a griever. I am open now, and these songs poured out quickly in the fall, watching the days grey over and watching the neighbors across the alley tear down and rebuild their house. I make these songs and put them out into the world just to multiply my voice saying that I love her. I want it known.

“DEATH IS REAL could be the name of this album. These cold mechanics of sickness and loss are real and inescapable, and can bring an alienating, detached sharpness. But it is not the thing I want to remember. A crow did look at me. There is an echo of Geneviève that still rings, a reminder of the love and infinity beneath all of this obliteration. That’s why.”

Elverum has stated that he will be playing these songs in front of audiences later in the year.


In 2015 Elverum’s wife, the French Canadian cartoonist and musician Geneviève Castrée, was diagnosed with a bad cancer just after giving birth to their first child. She died a year later. Elverum wrote and recored the album throughout the fall of 2016 in the same room where Geneviève died, using mostly her instruments; her guitar, her bass, her pick, her amp, her old family accordion, writing the words on her paper.

The songs are about the brutal details of that experience, from the hospitalizations to the grieving, the specific domestic banalities that become existential in the context of such huge and abrupt loss. These songs are not fun. They are pretty and they are deep, and they find a love that prevails beneath the overwhelming and real sorrow. It is unlike anything else in the Mount Eerie catalog in its unvarnished expressions of personal grief, metaphor-free.

Evan R, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 15:46 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah, this is just heartbreaking.

"Nothing wise or learned, just the described experience of living through unimaginable domestic obliteration, with names and dates"

devvvine, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 15:51 (one year ago) Permalink

That verse about the backpack she ordered for her daughter :(

"collapsed there on the front steps I wailed." I am sobbing.

Evan R, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 16:02 (one year ago) Permalink

Has always been amazing at conveying moments of being hit with a wave of emotion or sadness, but that verse is brutal.

another song from the album

devvvine, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 16:08 (one year ago) Permalink

christ this is gonna be brutal

a serious and fascinating fartist (Simon H.), Wednesday, 25 January 2017 19:17 (one year ago) Permalink

cant bring myself to listen to this yet

flappy bird, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 19:19 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't really know what to say about this but it is so strong and raw

ogmor, Wednesday, 25 January 2017 23:53 (one year ago) Permalink

man this song

just sayin, Thursday, 26 January 2017 10:46 (one year ago) Permalink

This is brutal. So powerful.

Eine Kleine Nakh Musik (Le Bateau Ivre), Thursday, 26 January 2017 11:58 (one year ago) Permalink

I love Phil and will always support him...raw stuff

Everything Moves Towards The Sun (Ross), Sunday, 29 January 2017 01:37 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah, likewise.

Phil was already incredibly direct but here he just immediately lets it know that "poetry is dumb" in light of what he's feeling the effect is unlike anything I've listened to before. I can't even really place the emotions listening to these songs and describing them as sad feels equally silly.

yesca, Sunday, 29 January 2017 05:22 (one year ago) Permalink

wrote a review of the show here. hard to do justice to how heavy it was.

fits, Wednesday, 1 February 2017 17:29 (one year ago) Permalink

Thanks for sharing that, very nice and thoughtful review.

I can't recall anticipating an album this much yet feeling almost 'scared' to listen to it...

Le Bateau Ivre, Wednesday, 1 February 2017 17:38 (one year ago) Permalink

Hi Fits,

Thank you! Really appreciate you posting that piece.

Everything Moves Towards The Sun (Ross), Wednesday, 1 February 2017 21:21 (one year ago) Permalink

yeah, great piece!

sean gramophone, Wednesday, 1 February 2017 21:26 (one year ago) Permalink

v nice piece on the show.

in twelve parts (lamonti), Wednesday, 1 February 2017 23:17 (one year ago) Permalink

wrote a review of the show here. hard to do justice to how heavy it was.

― fits

but you pretty much did! great writing, and i can tell you're v v well-versed in his musical output.

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 1 February 2017 23:36 (one year ago) Permalink

great piece, fits.

love that he walked out as soon as he was done

flappy bird, Wednesday, 1 February 2017 23:38 (one year ago) Permalink


Le Bateau Ivre, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 17:14 (one year ago) Permalink


Le Bateau Ivre, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 17:14 (one year ago) Permalink

oof. hold on to the ones you love.

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 17:22 (one year ago) Permalink

True words. I am actually nervous for this album... Ravens alone reduced me to a sobbing mess.. :-/

Le Bateau Ivre, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 18:18 (one year ago) Permalink

maybe i haven't seen any other recent pictures of him, but man Elverum looks like he's aged years and years in the new press pic on p4k. i gotta hold off on listening to this until it comes out... the first single was so brutal

flappy bird, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 18:26 (one year ago) Permalink

absolutely terrific piece on the show up there, fits. i read it on a lunch break and sat there and cried into my burrito

these songs are just devastating to listen to. the backpack bit ...

he announced some tour dates today, in case anyone missed it:

04-04 Eugene, OR - WOW Hall
04-06 Big Sur, CA - Henry Miller Library
04-09 Santa Ana, CA - When We Were Young Fest @ Observatory
04-10 San Diego, CA - Irenic
04-11 Los Angeles, CA - The Masonic Lodge @ Hollywood Forever
04-14 Oakland, CA - Starline Social Club
04-17 Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios
04-18 Olympia, WA - Obsidian
04-12-14 Arcosanti, AZ - FORM Arcosanti

alpine static, Friday, 17 February 2017 01:21 (one year ago) Permalink

Seems like he has no intention of coming back to Vancouver after that shambolic show years back. I'm with flappy bird - want to listen to this and will support him $, but there's so much grief and death in our culture, that I'm not sure I can handle this atm.

Everything Moves Towards The Sun (Ross), Friday, 17 February 2017 01:24 (one year ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

One hell of a read.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 13 March 2017 16:53 (one year ago) Permalink

It is.

Le Bateau Ivre, Monday, 13 March 2017 17:07 (one year ago) Permalink

The way the drums phase rules my life

kolakube (Ross), Thursday, 8 March 2018 22:55 (three months ago) Permalink

i love 1 as well. i always look forward to the closing loop with organ, creaking chair and the water being poured, the perfect sound setting for his imagery about finding shelter at the bottom of the ocean

On the cold dark ocean floor
I felt warmth from behind a door
I asked to come inside
And the glow replied

and somehow pt 2 is just as good, in a completely different way. i'm not even sure which one i'd pick.

and in my opinionation, the sun is gonna surely shine♪♫ (Karl Malone), Thursday, 8 March 2018 23:00 (three months ago) Permalink

Had the pleasure of seeing him play raw versions of many of these songs last year which may have been one of the saddest/most life affirming concert experiences that I've ever had. But holy hell has he transformed a lot of them. Powerful, beautiful, sad, all at once. "Now Only" is unreal. I'm down for his journey through grief. He's given us a lot of great music over the years, I'm interested to see where this goes. Love the album after one listen.

gman59, Friday, 9 March 2018 06:17 (three months ago) Permalink

Do people actually enjoy this? This is masochistic.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Friday, 9 March 2018 07:37 (three months ago) Permalink

Eh it's complicated. I guess enjoy isn't the word. I probably only made it through the last one once in full. I think i cried while listening to last album on the train the first time that I heard it. And the live show was painfully sad. But I also feel like it seems therapeutic for him and I'm getting a lot out of it so...I dunno, it's like a heightened version of traditionally sad music. I can't listen to it all the time but when I want to go through the fire, he touches on grief in a way i haven't really heard other musicians do. And the new one has fairly elaborate compositions so it's beginning to feel like music again, but yeah it's complicated and I don't really know if I do enjoy it but it certainly floors me.

gman59, Friday, 9 March 2018 08:45 (three months ago) Permalink

Do people actually enjoy this? This is masochistic.

FWIW, on first listen, I found this new one less overtly painful than the last, a little more digressive maybe?

Simon H., Friday, 9 March 2018 13:47 (three months ago) Permalink

I'm with Moka. I appreciate Phil's need to heal but (perhaps selfishly) my musical interests rarely go to bleak places these days, the world is fucked enough as is to wallow in it

kolakube (Ross), Friday, 9 March 2018 15:31 (three months ago) Permalink

ross, you should jump on that Andrew WK bandwagon we've got going

Simon H., Friday, 9 March 2018 15:34 (three months ago) Permalink


imago, Friday, 9 March 2018 15:35 (three months ago) Permalink

andrew wk should visit phil and give him a hug and a nice talk and phil will be much happier GUARANTEED

imago, Friday, 9 March 2018 15:38 (three months ago) Permalink

Okay Simon :)

kolakube (Ross), Friday, 9 March 2018 15:41 (three months ago) Permalink
In a painting from around 1915 called "Midsummer Eve Bonfire" by Nikolai Astrup that shines on my computer screen in 2017 in the awful July night
The house is finally quiet and still with the child asleep upstairs so I sit and notice the painting of bonfires on the hillside and hanging smoke in the valleys
Wrapping back up through the fjords at dusk, offering like scars of mist draped along the ridges of couples dancing in the green twilight around fires
And in the water below, the reflections of other fires from other parties illuminate the depths and glitter shining and alone
Everyone is laughing and there is music and a man climbs up the hill pulling a juniper down to throw into the fire to make some sparks rise up to join the stars
These people in the painting believed in magic and earth
And they all knew loss, and they all came to the fire

I saw myself in this one young woman in the foreground
With a look of desolation and a body that looked pregnant as she leaned against the moss of a rock soft to the side apart from all the people celebrating midsummer

I knew her person was gone just like me
And just like me she looked across at the fires from far away and wanted something in their light to say:
"Live your life and if you don't the ground is definitely ready at any moment to open up again, to swallow you back in, to digest you back into something useful for somebody"
And meanwhile above the Norwegians dancing in the twilight the permanent white snow gleamed
You used to call me "Neige Éternelle."
There's another Nikolai Astrup painting from 1920, called "Foxgloves" that hangs on the fridge
And I look at it every morning and every night before bed
Some trees have been cut down next to a stream flowing through a birch brow in late spring
And two girls that look like you gather berries and baskets hunched over like young animals, grazing
With their red dressed against the white birch three trunks interweaving
Beneath the cluttering leaves, the three stumps in the foreground remind me that everything is fleeting
As if reminding is what I need

and in my opinionation, the sun is gonna surely shine♪♫ (Karl Malone), Friday, 9 March 2018 16:43 (three months ago) Permalink

xp drum phasing on glow pt 1 yes! 'it was hot we stayed in the water' will always be my favourite work of phil's. it's so creative in arrangement but still fairly minimal. im not a vinyl listener regularly but its one of those that just sound better on LP.

as far as latest releases, i suppose it's emotional exertion as it always has been with phil. it's strange to me how listeners are surprised of the explicit confessional nature of the past two records. he spilled his guts years ago in the Dawn journal/CD, and has always been frank and earnest in lyrics. of course there's going to be a lot of heartfelt emotional vomit, and given the nature it's a challenging listen... phils never worked a regular job in his life -- he's not going about things any differently than he has ever done, it's all he's ever known. given his self-sufficiency, honesty and commitment (manning merch stalls before and after his own shows!) he's more worthwhile of respect than any other independent musician i can think of.

if the new records are too heavy for you maybe consider buying previous releases directly from his store to offer support

i hope i dont sound condescending -- the microphones just changed my life and were instrumental in music appraisal, ethics and practice for me!

meaulnes, Friday, 9 March 2018 17:49 (three months ago) Permalink

Feel absolutely the same bud ^ water is my favourite record too

kolakube (Ross), Friday, 9 March 2018 18:21 (three months ago) Permalink

i'm with Moka, i couldn't get past the first 4 songs on crow, tho i also agree with Simon that this record is more listenable, less raw material. and yea i'm happy for Phil blah blah blah but at least for me the verbose and very detailed lyrics prevent me from accessing this material on a universal emotional level. even something like John Lennon's first solo album, yeah he's singing about his mom and dad and the Beatles, but the song titles and lyrics are very elemental: Mother, Isolation, Remember, Love, God... and I agree with something meaulnes said on the Grouper thread re: her record Ruins. that one is deeply personal, stripped down, very somber... but her lyrics are not easily distinguishable, and when they are, they're of a more general nature (i.e. "every time i see you, i have to pretend i don't / it's funny when we fuck up, no one really has to care") than anything on these Mount Eerie records.

flappy bird, Friday, 9 March 2018 18:39 (three months ago) Permalink

I feel like it's abusive toward a listener-with-a-critical ear to inflict upon them music like this. Music that is impossible to criticize, because it's come from a point of grieving, and this is how it feels, unadorned and unpoetic-- to somebody who is tangentially acquainted with the man and the deceased, this is frustrating music-- for me. Glad it moves others. I do not want to listen to this music ever but I would cook the biggest best meal for Phil and babysit for him whenever he needs

nevertheless, he stopped (flamboyant goon tie included), Friday, 9 March 2018 19:34 (three months ago) Permalink

yeah. but the artist's impulse to channel grief & negative energy into something productive is very real. i completely understand the intent and purpose but will never listen to it.

flappy bird, Friday, 9 March 2018 19:36 (three months ago) Permalink

not getting accusatory but I wonder about the underlying attitude to death and/or art that leads ppl to hear heartbreakingly tender expressions of grief as masochistic or abusive

the fact that I found the last album hard to listen to speaks to my failing to face the intensity of it, not to a failure to express himself in a more palatable manner

I don't understand the surprise, it's as if people think he could or should have done something else. his insistence on being the same gentle, self-aware, ironic, simple, warm person is what makes these songs so devastating, but also inspiring, like if Phil can keep being Phil through this then mb there's hope for the rest of us

ogmor, Sunday, 11 March 2018 00:30 (three months ago) Permalink

echoing meaulnes there. I'll echo KM too and say the song about the astrup paintings is really special

ogmor, Sunday, 11 March 2018 00:36 (three months ago) Permalink

i don't think it's surprising, and i don't think the intent was masochistic or abusive, it's just the effect. and

the fact that I found the last album hard to listen to speaks to my failing to face the intensity of it, not to a failure to express himself in a more palatable manner

it's not a failing of the album, or an indictment, it's just that vicariously experiencing intense unfiltered grief feels horrible (to me)

flappy bird, Sunday, 11 March 2018 00:48 (three months ago) Permalink

some bizarre hubris in this thread, as if it matters even one tiny little bit what effect this music has on anyone besides Phil

alpine static, Sunday, 11 March 2018 09:19 (three months ago) Permalink

otm, static. i've said my piece already. phil is not making music to suit you.

meaulnes, Sunday, 11 March 2018 09:40 (three months ago) Permalink

i mean if you're sharing art then yeah it matters what effect this music has on others. not that it takes away from what it does for the artist but xp

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 10:50 (three months ago) Permalink

although "for" is an interesting word, and i guess i have mixed feelings about what it "means" elsewhere, e.g. the new camp cope record not being "for" cis white men. maybe it's hypocritical of me but it feels easier to say it doesn't matter what the people a record isn't for in that sense think than in this case bc it's a kind of person, a range of experience to which it testifies (and thus a range to which it doesn't) as opposed to one single person's, which. if no one else's opinion matters, then the point of sharing the art is for purely transactional purposes. which is not a bad thing, i'd like to support phil, but certainly a piece of art has the ability to be more than that

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 10:59 (three months ago) Permalink

and thus should be able to be judged on it. if that's the compromise of sharing art w the world, i think it's a fair trade for the medium's inherent commhnication. and i feel like if you don't feel that way it'd be kind of disgusting to listen to it?

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 11:04 (three months ago) Permalink

maybe "disgusting" is too strong but... weird. idk

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 11:05 (three months ago) Permalink

agree with the above. the notion that it's hubristic or even insensitive to criticise this as music is deranged

imago, Sunday, 11 March 2018 11:09 (three months ago) Permalink

phil's a big lad, he can look after himself

imago, Sunday, 11 March 2018 11:14 (three months ago) Permalink

you don’t have to twist yourself into a pretzel justifying your criticism. Phil put this music out, we didn’t break into his house & listen to it. the idea of any music being beyond reproach is incredibly silly

flappy bird, Sunday, 11 March 2018 16:17 (three months ago) Permalink

i didn't say it's insensitive or unfair to criticize the music. i said it doesn't matter what anyone thinks or feels about this music except Phil.

i was reacting to this bs: "I feel like it's abusive toward a listener-with-a-critical ear to inflict upon them music like this."

reading your own interpretation into others' words is deranged and silly.

alpine static, Sunday, 11 March 2018 19:45 (three months ago) Permalink

to clarify, i disagree w both statements

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 19:56 (three months ago) Permalink

i brought up judgment bc if no one else's opinion matters, there's no point in criticism. not that it's wrong, just meaningless, both of which don't work for me

lowercase (eric), Sunday, 11 March 2018 20:06 (three months ago) Permalink

i didn't say it's insensitive or unfair to criticize the music. i said it doesn't matter what anyone thinks or feels about this music except Phil.

this applies to all music criticism. eric otm

flappy bird, Monday, 12 March 2018 01:33 (three months ago) Permalink

thinking back to the times when i would ask artists for autographs, age ~13-15, these weren't just "regular people": these were adults who looked cool as hell who made music that stirred your teenage soul who were in town for one night only. they were archetypal cool role models who inspired you to start a band. if they weren't my parents or teachers or used book and camera store clerks, how would i have any sort of regular social relationship with them?

as an adult i definitely sympathize with phil's position but i do hope that it doesn't hurt his soul when teenagers ask for his autograph

scoff walker (diamonddave85), Monday, 12 March 2018 17:28 (three months ago) Permalink

i said it doesn't matter what anyone thinks or feels about this music except Phil.

on a message board with people with opinions about music

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 12 March 2018 17:32 (three months ago) Permalink

good review:

it does a better job of describing how 'now only' is different in concept and execution than "a crow looked at me", and it's clear the writer is deeply familiar with elverum's music

Karl Malone, Friday, 16 March 2018 05:44 (three months ago) Permalink

This album is astonishing

Davey D, Friday, 16 March 2018 06:40 (three months ago) Permalink

certainly different to the last, but maybe just as good.

jamiesummerz, Friday, 16 March 2018 12:15 (three months ago) Permalink

I really love this album, much more than ACLAM which I respect but never really want to listen to. possibly my favourite of his since The Glow pt. 2

it feels more melodic than ACLAM and the long track lengths give room for the music to shift with the lyrics. the lyrics being a bit greater in scope than just the raw grief does help to make it an easier listen

ufo, Friday, 16 March 2018 15:24 (three months ago) Permalink

He figured out how to make Kozelek's current shtick listenable/meaningful.

Evan, Friday, 16 March 2018 18:14 (three months ago) Permalink

Yeah the similarities to Mark Kozelek's recent stuff are definitely there, but such different dudes. The paintings song is the one I'm going back again and again. Thanks to the poster upthread who posted the image also.

in twelve parts (lamonti), Friday, 16 March 2018 21:33 (three months ago) Permalink

no prob! i didn't know anything Astrup before hearing the song. His work is amazing and I'd love to see it in person. "Midsummer Eve Bonfire" is actually a series of paintings, so it took a while to figure out which one he was referring to specifically.

Karl Malone, Friday, 16 March 2018 21:38 (three months ago) Permalink

although i do think that Now Only is definitely so much more than just ACLAM pt 2, i can definitely sympathize with those upthread who still find the subject matter too uncomfortable to bear. like ufo said, the lyrics have an expanded scope, but there are still lots of very intense, painful, ACLAM-style passages.

Karl Malone, Friday, 16 March 2018 21:42 (three months ago) Permalink

lots of press/interviews for Now Only that i haven't gotten around to reading yet:

Karl Malone, Friday, 16 March 2018 21:44 (three months ago) Permalink

Totally agree, in that people might refrain from the new one, but 'Now Only' is indeed so much more that ACLAM pt 2. We have a rolling worst P4K thread, wholly justified, but that review you posted KM is absolutely wonderful. So understanding, down to the nitty-gritty, and so compassionate in judging this new album on its merits, instead of just on its narrative. The latter, I can see why, would scare away a lot of people. But 'Now Only' is a beautiful beast, in its own right.

Google Atheist (Le Bateau Ivre), Friday, 16 March 2018 21:54 (three months ago) Permalink

from that atlantic interview, it sounds like there might be more to come in this vein:

Kornhaber: Was there any trepidation about doing two albums in a row in the same mode, on this same topic?

Elverum: Not at all. It wasn’t over. I had more to say still. And I didn’t want to stay in that feeling of A Crow Looked at Me. I knew the only way out of it was to continue writing songs. There wasn’t even really a gap in the production. I just kept writing.

I almost made Now Only a lot longer—there was this one song I’ve been trying to write for a long time, and I’m still chewing on that. That would be part three. Three seems like a good number to wrap up with and then do something else.

Kornhaber: So it might be a trilogy.

Elverum: Maybe, but I’m not holding too tight to that idea. I have been feeling happier lately, and more healed. I don’t think there’s going to be an end to grief. It’s a lifelong process and this loss will be with me forever. But lately I’ve been not dwelling in it so much.

Karl Malone, Saturday, 17 March 2018 00:53 (three months ago) Permalink

in a reddit AMA recently he mentioned that Benji was an influence on the lyrics of the last two albums, as it helped him to realise that poetry and metaphor could be abandoned for blank honesty

of course, this album is much much better than any of Kozelek's recent material

ufo, Saturday, 17 March 2018 01:11 (three months ago) Permalink

there's a little bit on that in the atlantic interview, too:

Kornhaber: Death is one of the great topics of art through history. Did anything about how culture has portrayed grief ring false to you once you went through it yourself?

Elverum: It all felt false. In my time of being just destroyed, I went through all my poetry books and nothing spoke to me.

No, that’s not true—there’s this one Gary Snyder poem [“Go Now”] that cracked things open for me in a really useful way. It’s written basically in the same style as A Crow Looked at Me, very graphic about the mechanics of disease and the death of his wife: the cremation, the smell, her teeth jutting out. No poetry involved. Just describing it. That opened up for me the idea of I don’t have to interpret this. I don’t have to make it pretty or find wisdom in it at all. It’s okay to just describe what happened, then leave it at that. There’s no lesson.

Karl Malone, Saturday, 17 March 2018 01:12 (three months ago) Permalink

Listened to this straight through today, sat in my local university library staring st the snow. It was perfect. I can remember entire sections of the lyrics, impressionistically at least - like it was transfusion as much as listening. Almost tempted to say I'll never listen to it again.

The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums (Chinaski), Saturday, 17 March 2018 20:04 (three months ago) Permalink

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