Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Kurt Vile - He's Alright 7" on Matador

Kurt Vile's first single on Matador, just picked it up at Academy the other day, 3 tracks starting with 'He's Alright' on the A-Side, you might be thinking this was on another release like I did, but I checked Constant Hitmaker and The Hunchback EP and it's not on any of those or anywhere else. These three are exclusive to this release... even if it sounds like something off CH though, slow strumming with a bit of echo. Verse after verse of that folk storyteller monotone, very Dylan, he's getting away with it, even though I know better. It's compelling, his nasal 'haaaaaaaaannndss' half hearted delivery, it's a lot of work to half mumble.
He's got a distinct strumming style which might be making this sound like an extension of a Hitmaker track, every other strum is a little louder a little faster, making it sound echoed, he's pushing the expressiveness of the standard action.
And then there's this line I kept pickign up on:
'Some people they use up all their cash / records and such they sit around but I don't care about that.'

Kurt? But I just bought your this some kind of cruel joke? A song about wasting my money on records? Damn you!

The B-Side first track Farfissas in Falltime is an instrumental throwaway reverb wobbly guitar, it sounds like a distorted looped sample. On top of that Kurt is solo-ing with a tight distortion that almost is synth. It's pretty cinematic, like Vangelis or something, using elements that are a little dated, but getting away with it, even elevating those sounds to something you can actually listen to and respect.
I appreciate it's on here, but I'm not going to seek it out probably.
'Take your time' is more solo acoustic Kurt and what you're going to spend time on picking over the lyrics, deciphering. God I hope no one takes him or any other acoustic guitarist seriously as a poet. Come on, poetry is just a separate animal, don't try to publish the verses on the page. it's one thing as liner notes, but Dylan as poetry? I don't buy it. It's a song...very different. It may be thanks to all the freshman English teachers who bring in Freewheelin' or Blood on the Tracks and yell at kids 'Listen to this! It's poetry!, Someday you'll understand!' that it's been ruined. You have to separate the two. The Beats may have killed poetry. That was the peak, and it's been downhill from there (take any spoken word show with the word 'slam' in it for example). I guess I'm going off on this tangent because he's got that gift for really effective songwriting, really universal but describing a pretty specific experience I feel like I share? Let;s just not get carried away.

Get it from Matador direct, or a million other places probably. I can't tell if this is the 7" that comes with the preorder of his Childish prodigy full length or not, I have to pick that up and see where Constant Hitmaker is going next.


  1. yep, it's the 7" that comes with childish prodigy. got my copies from matador earlier this week...

  2. Mimi,
    Thanks for confirming that, I won't preorder an extra copy. You're going to see him at mercury lounge next week?

  3. definitely, wouldn't miss it.