23 March 2017


winebox press 2017, edition of 47

"Perhaps better known by aliases (Cursillistas, Endless Caverns) and as a driving force behind Herbcraft, this is Lajoie's second full-length solo release under his own name. The material here inhabits a few different zones: the swirling title track moves from textural overtonal drone to an ecstatic Vibracathedral/VU movement-in-stasis moment of climax, while much of the rest of the first side combines free blues playing with 'Eastern' drone strings. Lajoie is a collaborator / peer of MV & EE and his music is often possessed of a similar spirit in terms of its blasted take on pre-war blues. Some of the slide guitar material on the second side here is pure languid back-porch starkness. 47 copies from a telephone stand/cabinet, broken down and reconstructed as cassette-sized boxes with snugly fitting lids, with screenprinted covers and inserts – this will most likely not make it to general sale so please email to reserve/order. Also available as a standard cassette on Early Music (EM03) with risograph-printed covers and screenprinted inserts, by email or from earlymusic.bigcartel.com." - WINEBOX PRESS

an indulgent slice of heady fringe folk that stands alongside the best i've found and labeled as such, sparse flickering late night hill country outsider meditations of fingerpicked fragments of old crusty blues and smoked out fractals of electrified backwoods seances channeling less HERBCRAFTian mechanics than might be expected if unfamiliar with LAJOIE's previous "LAJOIE" tape courtesy CABIN FLOOR ESOTERICA which also adroitly sidestepped any notion of "lite" or "leftovers" that often find a home in solo outings - but i would say there is a certain inevitable mild HERBCRAFTian cosmic vibe, which to my ears differentiates from ENDLESS CAVERNS freak folk mysticism - this is tangential stuff to be sure, an impressive american counterpoint to the elevated works of uk fringe folk guru JON COLLIN -- it should be noted that EYE comes courtesy COLLIN's delectably diy imprint WINEBOX PRESS

the MV connection isn't too far off but probably better suited to LAJOIE's aforementioned CFE tape - EYE is more refined and focused, there's a sense of forward progress, into the wind, which i must concede is something that MV's music lacks despite my fanatic reverence for MV - EYE has some sonic proximity to OAKHILL's catalog, at times dropping anchor in decidedly more traditional (and technically proficient) waters, steeped in acoustic psychedelics (this is mr HERBCRAFT i'm talking about here), reminiscent of DOC DUNN and WILLIE LANE, dealing in the abstraction and deconstruction of "american primitive" guitar into a peyote folk styling of sorts, other times drifting further out toward bold improvisational twilight zones navigated by the likes of JON COLLIN and VINCENZO DE LUCE's avant folk duos DROWNING IN WOOD and WANDER, tacking into the storm a time or two just to get the blood flowing - i dig me some HERBCRAFT but i could go for more of these "pure languid back-porch" inventions for guitar

not sure if the WINEBOX box edition is still around but the EARLY MUSIC "standard edition" is readily available (and more affordable) from the EARLY MUSIC shop


found a sample on WFMU's THE AVANT GHETTO which i should probably tune in to more often than i do - looks like the EYE track starts around the 1hr 38min mark