Pixel Revolt

Pixel Revolt

4.0 2
by John Vanderslice
     
 

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You know the rap concept albums get -- foot-thick mildewed tomes marked "pretentious" falling from the sky and crushing out your stereo. John Vanderslice's last two albums deftly avoided that stigma, despite the rich conceptual scope of Life and Death of an American Fourtracker and

Overview

You know the rap concept albums get -- foot-thick mildewed tomes marked "pretentious" falling from the sky and crushing out your stereo. John Vanderslice's last two albums deftly avoided that stigma, despite the rich conceptual scope of Life and Death of an American Fourtracker and Cellar Door, and 2005's Pixel Revolt is no different. Vanderslice has an incredibly light touch with his characters. His lyrics set the scene, but rarely is anything fully resolved or revealed. So there are keywords and phrases -- "mujahidin barricades," "I know you don't mean that dear," "peer round corners with dental mirrors," "Shawnee brave" -- and suggestions as to what's happening, but Pixel Revolt is always at a four-way stop. It can go anywhere. Musically it incorporates guitars, manipulated tape, timpani, cello, and all manner of keys -- whatever the songs require, and in keeping with Vanderslice's unfailing curiosity as both a producer and sonic technician. (For Revolt he worked again with engineer/multi-instrumentalist Scott Solter, and also collaborated lyrically with John Darnielle.) Erik Friedlander's cello traces the melancholy, recollective quality of "Letter to the East Coast," while the star-obsession meditation "Peacocks in the Video Rain" is more upbeat with its chattering percussion and Baroque pop chorus. "Continuation" has to do with cops and killers and cracking the case; appropriately, it has the feel of a procedural crime drama's urgent and gritty theme song. Law & Order: Tiny Telephone. Other highlights include the gentle piano of "Farewell Transmission," "Exodus Damage," and its cosmic country lilt, and closer "crc7171, Affectionately," which with its B3, hissing loops, and insistent percussion might harbor Pixel Revolt's finest arrangement. It definitely has its most cryptic title.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/23/2005
Label:
Barsuk
UPC:
0655173104422
catalogNumber:
44
Rank:
318120

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

John Vanderslice   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Electric Guitar,Vocals,Moog Synthesizer,Rhythm,Mellotron,fender rhodes,Wurlitzer,Arp Odyssey
Erik Friedlander   Cello
Matt Greenberg   Trumpet
John Hofer   Drums
Rob Douglas   Bass
Matt Henry Cunitz   Celeste,Bass Guitar,Mellotron,Pipe organ,Hammond B3
Scott Solter   Organ,Acoustic Guitar,Percussion,Drums,Electric Guitar,Hammond Organ,Tom-Tom,Baritone,Steel Drums,Bells,Vibes,Track Performer,Loops,E-bow,Wurlitzer,Guitar Loops
Alex DeCarville   Drums
Keith Cary   Upright Bass
Dave Douglas   Conga,Drums,Glockenspiel,Timpani,Crotale,Orchestral Bells
Chris McGrew   Track Performer
Bill Rousseau   Electric Guitar
David Douglas   Drums
Rob Douglas   Bass Guitar
Matthew Greenberg   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Joe Williams   Artwork
Robert Lowell   Composer
Erik Friedlander   String Arrangements
John Vanderslice   Composer,Collaboration
John Darnielle   Lyricist,Lyric Editing
Scott Solter   Engineer,Collaboration
Graham MacRae   Management

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Pixel Revolt 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i am a fan of his last album. i have only listened to the sample playlists so i dont know if this one is good. it sounds sweet and peaceful. its a definite preorder just based on the vanderslice's previous ability to write beautiful creative songs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you’re a fan of Matt Pond PA, Of Montreal and I’ll even go out on a limb and say Elliot Smith you won’t be disappointed by John Vanderslice. Underneath the Leaves and Me and My 424 from “The Life and Death of an American Four Tracker are Great”, and Exodus Damage is the perfect spring song. When my part of the mid-west finally thaws, this will be the first track I play.