In House #1835: Grant-Lee Phillips' Strangelet; New Laura Veirs
Back in the halcyon 90' s, once could still occasionally catch an actual music video from an actual band worth hearing on MTV. This is not to say the popular music scene was much better than it is now-- one still had to wait 10 or 15 videos before coming across something that didn't sound like everything else. It wasn't difficult, then, for Grant Lee Buffalo's "Mockingbirds," (from their 1994 release Mighty Joe Moon) to stand out amongst the Candleboxes and Lives of the time, as it somehow garnered moderate play on the channel. It was, of course, Grant-Lee Phillips' unique croon that drove the vehicle, rising to falsetto on the despondent but strangely comforting chorus, "And I thought/ If I toed/ The right lines/ But these mockingbirds won't/ Let me shine..." These days Phillips is still at it but taking the troubadour route, and his television appearances tend more towards his recurring role on The Gilmore Girls or the odd late night show appearance than they do MTV. Strangelet, the singer-songwriter's fifth solo release in the past seven years, drops today on Zoe, and finds him splitting the difference between the pop shine of 2001's Mobilize and the sepia-toned roots of 2004's Virginia Creeper. It's another engaging and melodic set from Phillips, who engineered, produced, and performed the album almost entirely on his own, save a little help from his band and friends like R.E.M.'s Peter Buck. Aside from his regular Los Angeles gigs, Phillips will be playing major U.S. cities here and there throughout the spring before heading to Europe this summer.
In House #1835.
Focus: New release out today from Grant-Lee Phillips, Strangelet, plus new music from Andrew Bird, Laura Veirs, and more.
Grant-Lee Phillips, from Strangelet:
Chrisopher Blue, from room tones (due 4/17):
Grant Lee Phillips, from Strangelet: "Raise the Spirit"
In House PODCAST #282