Peter Jefferies : Last Great Challenge In A Dull World

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Lost classic, underated etc.... The Fate Of The Human Carbine still sends shivers up my rusty spine and so does this record - give it up for the Taranaki prince on Pitchfork blah... anyone heard this, have any thoughts and so on and so forth. Clearly I am not very articulate but maybe someone else is. I once saw Peter Jefferies play live, hooked up to drums with his feet, playing keyboard and I think sometimes guitar while singing or more accurately howling and emoting in that exact, pure wise voice of his. Pretty astonishing fellow. Also saw him in an early version of Dimmer - it may come as no surprise to learn he was also very great at that.

Hinklepicker, Friday, 7 June 2013 05:30 (five years ago) Permalink

Total classic etc, one of those albums/artists that made more of an impact on the US college radio circuit etc than it did back home in NZ. Living w/his mother in the 'naki, I believe - really wish he'd managed the sort of quiet career Alastair Galbraith did, or Pumice manages now.
"The Fate Of The Human Carbine" & "Randolph's Going Home" still give me chills, yeah.
As well as the Cat Power cover of "The Fate...", I remember the Dresden Dolls covering "Electricity", heh.
Man, really wish those early Dimmer shows had been better-documented - didn't Matt Middleton or someone similar play guitar early on? Plus one of King Loser's drummers?

etc, Friday, 7 June 2013 06:27 (five years ago) Permalink

This record is hugely classic, but not having listened to it more than a couple of times in the last twenty years it's hard to be more explicit than that. Kind of a more melodic extension of the TKOP stuff? As with so much else for me, I picked it up at the time because of a rave review in Forced Exposure. Think that Coley compared it to Eno and Ayers and Cale, and their influence is pretty undeniable - On An Unknown Beach sounds like an outtake from Another Green World and even the title screams Eno to me, but I have to say it doesn't lessen its beauty to me, and if it were on AGW, it would surely be one of my favourite songs on there.

Interesting that it had some degree of success in the US cos I would venture that it remains almost completely unknown in the UK, and if he were to play in my city, he would get no more than three people (if that) turning up, much like Galbraith got 10 years ago.

dschinghis kraan (NickB), Friday, 7 June 2013 08:06 (five years ago) Permalink

of a more melodic extension of the TKOP stuff?

'More melodic' is probably the wrong phrase btw, cos TKOP had some knock-out tunes. Maybe I meant less abrasive? Will have to give this another listen over the weekend anyhow.

dschinghis kraan (NickB), Friday, 7 June 2013 08:26 (five years ago) Permalink

Just caught myself walking around the offices singing 'keep the bastards guessing' under my breath.

This thing is on spotify now btw, w00t!

dschinghis kraan (NickB), Friday, 7 June 2013 10:43 (five years ago) Permalink

Great stuff, and glad to see it reissued after all this time. Damn, I think I was supposed to interview him...hectic month.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 7 June 2013 12:40 (five years ago) Permalink

^^ would love to read that interview. i've been listening almost exclusively to the reissue this week.

rusty_allen, Friday, 7 June 2013 15:09 (five years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

still, best reissue i've heard all year.

rusty_allen, Wednesday, 3 July 2013 01:11 (five years ago) Permalink

two months pass...

Annnnd...first gig in 11 years:

And yes, that is Amanda Palmer.

Sez Brian Turner, who was there:

Palmer's annoying demeanor (and more annoying introductory speech about Jefferies before he played) aside, it was evident that PJ was sincerely moved by playing to a room of youngish people stoked to see him (even if it was via her cover of Unknown Beach), saying how he usually played to 20 people talking loudly in the past... so, hope he keeps it going, his voice and vibe was still a solid wall of intensity for the five short songs of his set. Even odder twist to the night was the opener before him, Palmer's tuxedo-wearing bass player doing a solo Konono No. 1 jam...

Ned Raggett, Friday, 6 September 2013 13:59 (five years ago) Permalink

I never heard anything after the brilliant "Chorus Of Interludes" odds and ends comp. Any thoughts on these?
Elevator Madness (1996)
Substatic (1998)
Closed Circuit (2001)

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Friday, 6 September 2013 17:09 (five years ago) Permalink

All great.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 6 September 2013 17:11 (five years ago) Permalink

I find this just shy of vile desecration but here it is anyway

a hard dom is good to find (Edward III), Friday, 6 September 2013 17:36 (five years ago) Permalink

tonight I will be seeking out my cassette copy of last great challenge in a dull world to bleach ears clean

a hard dom is good to find (Edward III), Friday, 6 September 2013 17:37 (five years ago) Permalink

I haven't heard Peter Jefferies since high school, but I loved his records on AJax and TKOP. I'm happy to hear this is being reissued and he's getting new fans. Electricity was my favorite solo record, Wish I hadn't purged all of my records in collage.

JacobSanders, Friday, 6 September 2013 17:46 (five years ago) Permalink

Cat Power covered him as well:

dan selzer, Friday, 6 September 2013 17:56 (five years ago) Permalink

Is there any info about tour dates somewhere? I'm not having any luck googling

badg, Friday, 6 September 2013 18:18 (five years ago) Permalink

Thanks Amanda for getting Peter to perform. But really, do you have to be up there center stage singing with him trying to steal the spotlight? It's not your song sister...

I'll take the jangle-jangle over the throb-throb (brg30), Friday, 6 September 2013 22:35 (five years ago) Permalink

Don't forget Electricity.

Hinklepicker, Saturday, 7 September 2013 00:02 (five years ago) Permalink

nine months pass...

Auckland show this July!

etc, Friday, 20 June 2014 23:37 (four years ago) Permalink

Reissue of Electricity on US label Superior Viaduct; Shayne Carter playing support at the show so who knows, maybe we'll get "Randolph's Coming Home".

Just came across this this tribute from a local musician, too.

etc, Friday, 20 June 2014 23:40 (four years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

"Guided Tour Of A Well Known Street / Bad Politics (the Dead C)" live in Philadelphia back in the early 90s

etc, Friday, 11 July 2014 11:03 (four years ago) Permalink

^excellent read. he's currently being interviewed on radio nz :-0

no lime tangier, Saturday, 12 July 2014 03:23 (four years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

American tour, y'all:

- Oct 1st - Brooklyn, NY (Issue Project Room)
- Oct 2nd - Philadelphia, PA (First Unitarian Church - Side Chapel)
- Oct 4th - Detroit, MI (Museum of Contemporary Art)
- Oct 5th - Chicago, IL (The Empty Bottle)
- Oct 7th - Los Angeles, CA (TBA)
- Oct 9th - San Francisco, CA (Hemlock Tavern)
- Oct 10th - Oakland, CA (The Night Light)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 27 August 2014 21:29 (four years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Alas, cancelled:

Unfortunately, Peter Jefferies was denied entry last minute due to a visa issue. Hopefully we can re-schedule for next year. Advance tickets refunded by the venues. We are very sorry, folks.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 29 September 2014 19:30 (four years ago) Permalink

Oh darn.

One bad call from barely losing to (Alex in SF), Tuesday, 30 September 2014 00:56 (four years ago) Permalink

That really sucks.

Badmotorfinger Debate Club (MFB), Tuesday, 30 September 2014 01:09 (four years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Beautiful little (if underpromoted / last-minute, + at a new venue) show in Wellington last Weds - piano version of a bunch of solo stuff from The Last.. & Electricity & a cover of Smog's "A Hit", then a bunch of TKOP stuff (has re-learned them due to a reunion show in Auckland later this year? Apparenty the lineup's him/Chr1s M4tthews & Mikey from D1e! D1e! D1e), then was joined by Robbie Muir for dual guitar / guitar+piano versions of "Catapult"/"A Chorus Of Interludes"/"Fate Of The Human Carbine"/etc and, uh, covers of "Mr Tambourine Man" & "Walk on the Wild Side". Seemed really happy to be playing.

etc, Monday, 25 April 2016 01:59 (two years ago) Permalink

Wow, that's amazing, I am very jealous. I would love for him to actually make it over to the States finally. Was gutted about that cancellation couple years (!) back now...

Badmotorfinger Debate Club (MFB), Tuesday, 26 April 2016 19:31 (two years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

lp reissue of at swim 2 birds on the horizon...

no lime tangier, Saturday, 28 May 2016 01:31 (two years ago) Permalink

Such a wonderful record

doug watson, Saturday, 28 May 2016 03:46 (two years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Another great little show last night at the Wellington Museum for their Burning Up Years retrospective for NZ music month - solo performances of "On An Unknown Beach", "Wined Up" etc, then a duo of Chr1s M4tthews & He4th Te Au did a bunch of covers (Toy Love, Skeptics' "Agitator", the Gordons' "Coalminer's Song", Headless Chickens' "Mr Moon") before Peter joined them to play a shitload of TKOP/Nocturnal Projections songs as a trio (including "The Sleepwalker", which was kind of buzzy after the earlier "Mr Moon"). To echo myself from two years ago, he seemed really stoked to be playing.

Anyway, looks like there's a complete Nocturnal Projections studio recordings reissue!

etc, Saturday, 12 May 2018 03:02 (eight months ago) Permalink

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