MATT VALENTINE - BLAZING GRACE
time-lag 2016, edition of 500
"a new apex has been reached, wrapped in MV's most loving & elaborate 'spectrasound' production to date, a sonic pallet that simply ripples with nuance, tone, and a seemingly bottomless depth of detail. all together, a start-to-finish trip that's instantly memorable & hummable, subtly intimate yet cosmically blasted. restrained yet fully rocking, with that unmistakable burnt ragged edge, packaged in a beautiful full color 60s style heavy tip-on cover, with large insert" - TIME-LAG
TIME-LAG returns after a two year hiatus with "one last epic harvest, the final chapter" - well that is a bit of a downer, but the music is absolute upper crust, and i'm sure the packaging will match - i haven't seen em up close and in person yet but TIME-LAG has never spared any expense - two essential MAXINE FUNKE reissues, LACE and FELT, which are sure to become the quintessential editions given the former was previously only available on cdr and the latter only on vinyl in an instantly unavailable diy edition of 100 now fetching north of $150 -- these reissues alone would be a righteous enough note to go out on, but they merely set the stage for the latest and greatest from MATT VALENTINE entitled BLAZING GRACE, which is just about the awesomest album title ever -- note that the FUNKE reissues are sequential in TIME-LAG's catalog as entries 062 and 063, but BLAZING GRACE is 099 - "better to burn out than to fade away" - a fitting NEIL YOUNG sentiment all around
must be somethin in the air on maximum arousal farm, MV is on an inspired studio rush, this is his fourth proper album (including MV & EE titles) in the past eight months or so, and two of those are massive double lps -- BLAZING GRACE is like a lazy river running downstream from magnum opus MIDDEN MOUND, an even more intimate and immersed backwater bedroom exposition of stoner folk pop and acid spiked lunar blues, again featuring a healthy host of contributors -- all the road regulars including J MASCIS, JEREMY EARL, MICK FLOWER and of course ERIKA ELDER, plus a couple of irregulars in PETE NOLAN (MAGIK MARKERS, ARBITRARY SIGNS) and MEG BAIRD (ESPERS, HERON OBLIVION) -- it gloriously blurs and blends into itself, lending it a laid back listening experience - by my measure it is MV's most accessible work in nearly a decade since GETTIN GONE, straight ahead "NEIL YOUNG in space" vibe meandering through some catchy sky high ballads kinda like "down by the river" and "ambulance blues" drifting through the cosmos laced with ecstatic riffs and fuzz licks salvaged from LIVE/DEAD and WHITE LIGHT/WHITE HEAT, or rather YOU'RE LIVING ALL OVER ME, spiraling through some "environs" esque psych rock before arriving at a perfect cathartic closing track - a fantastic album, as expected
highest possible recommendation
you can sample the rest of the tracks courtesy MIDHEAVEN
there's a "special edition" limited to 50 that has all the standard edition fixins plus "a special heavy paper outer cover wrap, with large format paste-on alternate artwork, plus a 12 page stitched chapbook with lyrics & art, and 'peacemouth' sticker"