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Matthew Dear: Preachers Sigh & Potion: Lost Album

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Artist: Matthew Dear
Title: Preachers Sigh & Potion: Lost Album

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Matthew Dear: Preachers Sigh & Potion: Lost Album
Artist: Matthew Dear
Title: Preachers Sigh & Potion: Lost Album

1. Product Details

Twenty-plus years into his career producer/vocalist/songwriter/DJ Matthew Dear remains artistically unpredictable in pursuit of his prescient strain of electronically-formed organically-delivered indie pop. His work traverses myriad musical worlds belonging to none. But these fluid moves have not been without a few forks in the road decisive turns and what-ifs. Most notable is the pivot-point following Dears acclaimed 2007 avant-pop LP Asa Breed in which he broke away from the 4/4 grid of his techno/house debut Leave Luck To Heaven and into something much more wild and idiosyncratic. Traveling between his adopted Detroit and his home state of Texas throughout 2008 and 2009 Dear amassed a set of personal playful looping guitar-centric recordings hed consider for his next album. Given the new momentum of the hybrid electronic pop of Asa Breed which led to an opening slot for Hot Chip and remixes for 00 heroes like Spoon and Postal Service Dear decided to shelf the material. He moved ahead to work on his watershed 2010 album Black City a steely noir set which earned him a Best New Music on Pitchfork and a worldwide tour with a besuited band. This lost album had a sound a spirited country romp in the techno barn and it had a rough title a scribble on one of the CD-Rs passed to Ghostly label founder Sam Valenti IV Preachers Sigh & Potion. He never fully walked away from it and merely kept moving down the road waiting for the audience to catch up. Over a decade later that time is now.Preachers Sigh & Potion finds Dear unknowingly at an intersection in his young run a burgeoning songwriter at his most freewheeling and unaffected. Dear reflects as he listens back I love hearing how free and raw a lot of the production is. As we age we get trapped in thinking our output or creativity needs to mature as well. Some of that is unavoidable but listening to these songs reminds me to not think so much. Its important to be in that world without consequence from time to time.In hindsight there were hints of Preachers sound on As Breed but the set still registers endearingly out of step with his eventual direction. This was the first time Dear tapped so directly into his late fathers influence as a fingerpicking guitar player in the 1960s and 70s and a gateway to the music of John Prine Townes Van Zandt and Emmylou Harris. Dear details: On one trip down to Austin I took some of my dads equipment and tried to lay out a song using what I knew about techno arrangement but use his guitars and various small instruments to layer a more organic loop-based sound. Id say that was the beginning of this album. Realizing I could apply what Id been doing in the computer to the other music I loved and grew up with.The twang and tambourine stomp of album opener Muscle Beach gets right into it with Dears bluesy baritone narrating a country-folk tale of a young man on the run. Hikers Y is unmistakably Matthew Dear building on a locked-in bassline he delivers a dryly dismissive mantra as a metronome-like pulse that is equal parts porch music talking blues and minimal techno unafraid to straddle those two worlds. Supper Times cycles hypnotically around a major scale loop that gyres off into minor chords skating underneath like a disorienting dream sequence Dears vocals hover luminously obscured in the static as airy synth sounds percolate. Its a bait and switch for Crash and Burn the albums most fevered stretch all bent up guitar strums and slacker-pop harmonica chaos. Brushing up against touchstones like Becks Odelay era smash and grab-popcentrics this one doesnt escape unstung by the cactus of Dears whiz-bang production hallmarks.From the mid-song piano break in All Her Fits a rare Dear chord change to the gloomy carnival-leaving-town pomp of Gutters and Beyond Preachers Sigh & Potion is filled with the reckless notions of an artist dashing the history of pop and rock the twang of country the build and release of techno. Dear is an auteur and in retrospect so many of his signatures crop up in these relics from his former self. Dear remembers him well: Its crazy how music memory exists in a very deep and indescribable tangibility. I know the person who made all these and remember glimpses of the desk or studio set up for each recording. I know who wrote these lyrics and where they were mentally during that process. Revisiting this material now also has Dear thinking about his fathers legacy: He also showed me that anyone can play and perform for people regardless of having albums or not. He was a very controlled and skilled guitar player but made it look natural and smooth. He had hundreds of songs in his repertoire and would play them nightly for us in the living room. He lived for music and I hope I can pass that along to his grandkids.

1.1 Muscle Beach
1.2 Sow Down
1.3 Hikers y
1.4 Never Divide
1.5 All Her Fits
1.6 Supper Times
1.7 Crash and Burn
1.8 Heart to Sing
1.9 Eye
1.10 Head
1.11 Gutters and Beyond


H 0.23
W 12.12
L 12.29

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