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Doves Jimi Goodwin to release solo album ‘Odludek’

Jimi Goodwin

After four acclaimed albums with Doves (two No. 1s, two Platinum, two Gold, two Mercury nominations), Jimi Goodwin is releasing his first solo album on Heavenly Recordings.

After their last release in 2010, Doves all agreed they needed a break. “We never said we’d split,” clarifies Jimi, “but we all needed some time to go off and do our own thing for a while. I’d never rule out us coming back together again either. Never say never. But this is what I’m concentrating on at the moment… and I’m loving it”.

A wonderful, deeply personal album that is impossible to pigeonhole and will surprise a few people, Odludek is the first record great record of 2014. It boasts brilliant, panoramic, visceral, soul-searching tracks that are true siblings to Doves’ oeuvre, especially lead single ‘Oh! Whisky’; a few magnificent curveballs like ‘Man vs Dingo’, which sounds like Tom Waits and Black Grape-era Shaun Ryder trapped in a lift with Talking Heads, Gorillaz and The Roots; and a few that segue between the two.

If there was a starting point for the record, it was the idea of an old school mixtape. Anyone lucky enough to receive a handcrafted tape from Jimi over the years will testify to his diverse, catholic tastes and Odludek is a heady mystic brew steeped in Northern Soul, Southern gospel, hip-hop, psychedelica, ambient, krautrock, dub, funk and acid house. “I wanted it to be like that crazy mixtape you’d make your mate which had everything from Duke Ellington to some mad hip-hop track you’d just heard, and back again,” says Jimi. “That’s how I listen to music, and I wanted to make an album that reflected that. The last thing I wanted it to sound like was some geezer who was in a band. I don’t like being pegged.”

Odludek is a Polish word, meaning loner or pilgrim. It fits the album, and fits where Jimi is at the moment. “I’m no hermit, but I can be on that loner vibe at times. Odludek just sounded like a crazy, loner pilgrim to me, and it reflects that I did this record all on my own, I’m not in a band now.”

Jimi wrote and played almost everything on Odludek himself. “Initially I wanted to have loads of guests on it. Maybe I wasn’t trusting my own instincts because I’d collaborated in a band for such a long time, but that idea soon went out the window. Very quickly I decided I wanted to get my Prince head on and play everything. I became very protective of it. There was no-one steering me. I made it myself and paid for it myself, and that was very free and liberating.”

Recorded over 18 months in a friend’s studio in The Forest of Dean, co-produced by Dan Austin (who co-produced Kingdom of Rust) with guest slots from Guy Garvey, Fredrik Bjorling (ex-Dungen), Jake Evans, Joe Roberts, and a brass section, Odulek, like the best Doves albums, is a complex record which reveals another layer on each listen. The opening blast of ‘Terracotta Warrior’ is a statement of intent that this may not be the album you expected. The sublime ‘Didsbury Girl’ Jimi has had since 2004, “It just kept knocking at my door, and wouldn’t leave me alone”. ‘Live Like A River’ is “Queens of the Stone Age meets rave, it could have been the single for me, as it sums up the record”. ‘Man vs Dingo’ is a stream of consciousness rant which is new territory for Jimi, “I wanted to do a shouty Johnny Clarke meets Shaun Ryder rant, as I’ve never done one. The closest thing I ever did in Doves was the disorientated middle bit in Black and White Town”. Lead single ‘Oh! Whisky’ is reminiscent of ‘There Goes The Fear’ in Jimi’s imitable skill of underpinning a euphoric, anthemic track with wistful, melancholia, this time wrestling the demons of drink. ‘Lonely At The Drop’ is another melancholic anthem that could be the older, weather-beaten brother of ‘Caught By The River’.

After years of promising each other, Jimi also finally managed to collaborate with old friend Guy Garvey on ‘Panic Tree’, a heart touching ode to father-son relationships, inspired by 1920s Texan gospel singer Washington Philips. “Guy and I always vowed to work together and I played him an old Washington Philips track called ‘Lift Him Up, That’s All’ and we said, ‘When we finally get a chance to do something together, that will be the springboard.’” When they did eventually get in the studio, they clicked immediately and ended up with three songs drafted in an afternoon. “I played Guy the demos, which had the rough melodies and first lyric drafts, and within two hours they were more or less finished. That’s how quick it was. We’re just dead simpatico. We really connect, and he just got where I wanted to go.”

Jimi is currently putting together a band to tour Odludek and joins Elbow on their forthcoming UK arena tour in April. “I feel like I’ve been in hibernation, and now I’m emerging out in to the sunlight again, and it feels great.”

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Heavenly Recordings

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March 2010 music sampler

Fire Zuave
Recommended if you like: Of Montreal, The Decemberists, Neutral Milk Hotel

Grand Atlantic
This song reminds me of so many bands that I can’t grasp one outright. Brit Rock meets mid-90’s grunge.
Recommended if you like: Swervedriver, Stone Temple Pilots

The Mummers

The Howling Bells
Recommended if you like: The Duke Spirit, The Long Blondes, The Joy Formidable, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Doves

National Skyline
Recommended if you like: Hum, Jeremy Enigk

National Skyline was a band formed in Champaign-Urbana, IL, by Jeff Dimpsey of Hum to perform a 45-minute long song he had written. In 1999, Dimpsey and vocalist/guitarist Jeff Garber (Castor) released their self-titled mini-LP on Parasol Records. A live tour that consisted only of Garber, Blacklist/Compound Red guitarist James Minor, re-worked electronic tracks and a blinding, strobe-heavy light show followed. The band promptly signed to Philadelphia’s File 13, but not before contributing an early demo called “Eurorak” to the Parasol Records’ Sweet Sixteen, Volume 2 compilation. Upon tour’s end, Dimpsey and Garber quickly recorded and released their Exit Now EP. Minor was made an official member, and the three convened later that year to write and record their full-length debut, This = Everything. Garber jumped ship shortly after the record’s release, moving to Los Angeles to join the short lived Year Of The Rabbit.

In 2006, Garber leaked information about a new project on the group’s MySpace account, without involvement from Dimpsey or Minor, including the new track “Pack Up,” and launched the group’s homepage – a Byzantine series of clipart images in a Flash animation ending with the eagle logo and the words “FAUX EVIL.”

In early 2007, Garber posted two new songs and a blog entry on the group’s myspace page indicating that a new National Skyline record would be forthcoming.

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Mezzanine Owls

http://mezzanineowls.com/
myspace profile

Recommended if you like: Jesus and Mary Chain, The Doves

Mezzanine Owls are opening for Rob Dickinson of The Catherine Wheel tomorrow night at Cafe Du Nord. (7/25/08)

Mezzanine Owls – “Light Bulb”

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SPIN:
“A haunting Jesus and Mary Chain rattle filtered through an anthemic guitar line as driven as something from another avian outfit, Doves.”

USOUNDS:
“Dreamlike, and at once melodically haunting and optimistic.”

SF GUARDIAN:
“This four-piece builds luxuriant canopies of shimmering guitars and propulsive rhythms reminiscent of British heart racers Doves and Elbow but bearing the intriguing twist of wounded vocals landing somewhere between Dean Wareham and Mercury Rev”

SOUND AS LANGUAGE:
“A quiet stunner of a debut.”

THE FIRE NOTE:
“An excellent debut, capable of winning you over with one listen.”

MOKB:
“Shoegazey, melodious with soaring guitar and an 80s pop feel to the vocals.”

LA TIMES:
“Spent a lot of time with the driving layered guitars of Mezzanine Owls’ “Slingshot Echoes”.”

BOTH SIDES OF THE MOUTH:
“Mezzanine Owls are dark, pensive indie rock, deserving of your listening pleasure.”

ANTIMUSIC:
“Slingshot Echoes is the best unsigned release since Clap Your Hands.”

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