Union Transfer

1026 SPRING GARDEN STREET, PHILADELPHIA, PA 19123 Ι 215-232-2100

Father John Misty

Father John Misty

La Sera, Jeffertitti's Nile

Sun, October 21, 2012

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Union Transfer

Philadelphia, PA

$15.00

This event is all ages

Father John Misty
Father John Misty
When discussing 'Father John Misty', Tillman paraphrases Philip Roth: 'It's all of me and none of me, if you can't see that, you won't get it'. What I call it is totally arbitrary, but I like the name. You've got to have a name. I never got to choose mine."

He goes on, "'People who make records are afforded this assumption by the culture that their music is coming from an exclusively personal place, but more often than not what you hear are actually the affectations of an 'alter-ego' or a cartoon of an emotionally heightened persona," says Josh Tillman, who has been recording/releasing solo albums since 2003 and who recently left Seattle's Fleet Foxes after playing drums from 2008-2011. "That kind of emotional quotient isn't sustainable if your concern is portraying a human-being made up of more than just chest-beating pathos. I see a lot of rampant, sexless, male-fantasy everywhere in the music around me. I didn't want any alter-egos, any vagaries, fantasy, escapism, any over-wrought sentimentality. I like humor and sex and mischief. So when you think about it, it's kind of mischievous to write about yourself in a plain-spoken, kind of explicitly obvious way and call it something like 'Misty'. I mean, I may as well have called it 'Steve'".

Musically, Fear Fun consists of such disparate elements as Waylon Jennings, Harry Nilsson, Arthur Russell, "All Things Must Pass," and "Physical Graffiti," often within the same song. Tillman's voice has never been better and often sounds like Roy Orbison, "The Caruso of Rock", at his most joyous, while the music maintains a dark, mysterious and yet conversely playful, almost Dionysian quality. Lyrically, his absurdist fever dreams of pain and pleasure elicit, in equal measures, the blunt descriptive power of Bukowski or Brautigan, the hedonist-philosophy of Oscar Wilde and the dried-out wit of Loudon Wainwright III.

The album began gestating during what Tillman describes as an "immobilizing period of depression", in his former Seattle home. "Songwriting for me had always only been interesting and necessary because I saw it as this vehicle for truth, but I had this realization that all I had really done with it was lick my wounds for years and years, and become more and more isolated from people and experiences. I don't even like wound-licking music, I want to listen to someone rip their arm off and beat themselves with it. I don't believe that until now I've ever put anything at risk in my music. I was hell-bent on putting my preciousness at stake in order to find something worth singing about."

He continues, "I lost all interest in writing music, or identifying as a 'songwriter'. I got into my van with enough mushrooms to choke a horse and started driving down the coast with nowhere to go. After a few weeks, I was writing a novel, which is where I finally found my narrative voice. The voice that is actually useful.

"It was a while before that voice started manifesting in a musical way, but once I settled in the Laurel Canyon spider-shack where I'm living now, I spent months demoing all these weird-ass songs about weird-ass experiences almost in real-time, and kind of had this musical 'Oh-there-I-am' moment, identical to how I felt when I was writing the book. It was unbelievably liberating. I knew there was never any going back to the place I was writing from before, which was a huge relief. The monkey got banished off my back."

Tillman brought the demos to LA producer/songwriter/pal Jonathan Wilson, and in February 2011 began recording at his home-studio in Echo Park. "Initially, the idea was to just kind of recreate the demos with me playing everything, since they were pretty fleshed out and sounded cool, but a place like LA affords you a different wealth of talent, potential, etc than just about anywhere else. I realized what was possible between Jonathan's abilities, and the caliber of musicians that are just hanging around LA, pretty quickly. People were coming in and out of the studio all day sometimes, and other days, it would just be Jonathan and I holed up, getting stoned, and doing everything.

"I was honest with myself about what music actually excites my joy-glands when I was considering the arrangements and instrumentation," says Tillman. "As opposed to what's been enjoyable to me in the past – namely, alienating people or making choices based on what I think people won't like or understand. Pretty narcissistic stuff."

When asked about Laurel Canyon, where he eventually ended up living in the aforementioned tree-house with a family of spiders, Tillman says, "My attitude about it all is pretty explicit in the record. Given my fairly adversarial personal attitude about the music and aesthetic that comes from that place, it's kind of a huge joke that I live in a former hippie-fantasy land. I have a really morbid sense of humor."

Phil Ek (who everyone knows has worked with Built To Spill, Modest Mouse, Band of Horses, Fleet Foxes) heard the rough versions of the album in May 2011 and offered his services to mix. "Phil and I have known each other for a while by virtue of Fleet Foxes, so he was familiar with my music, but we had never discussed working together. I think he immediately recognized the shift in my writing and singing from a producer and friend's standpoint. His excitement is really evident in mixes, I think."
La Sera
La Sera
Since joining all-female punk trio Vivian Girls during the spring of 2007 Katy Goodman's DIY-style bass playing and drifty-faded vocals have sent waves of adoration rippling throughout Brooklyn's pop punk circuit. Her newest band La Sera showcases her signature style, bringing her talent for creating dreamy pop songs even more to the forefront. La Sera just finished a west coast tour and had a smashing time at CMJ.
After touring the world with Vivian Girls, releasing a handful of well-received records, and starting record label Wild World with her band mates, Goodman started exploring other outlets. She played in the short-lived dream-pop band All Saints Day in the spring of 2010, and a self-titled limited-edition 7" of spectral tunes was released on indie label Art Fag earlier this year.
In February 2010 Goodman started working on some fresh material that inspired the formation of her brand new band, La Sera. Her inspiration sprung from an attraction to early pop hits from the 1950's and ethereal choral vocals. Her new songs contain warm celestial-pop melodies that echo with the dreamlike effect of a church choir and effuse a softer, less aggressive sound than the Vivian Girls.
Recording with a tambourine, guitar, and layers upon layers of heavenly vocals, she started sending her songs to filmmaker/music producer Brady Hall (the director of Vivian Girls videos "Moped Girls" and "When I'm Gone"), who immediately wanted to collaborate and dove into re-recording her rough material himself. After hearing his finished work, Katy flew to Seattle and the two recorded all the vocals, mixed the songs and filmed two La Sera music videos at Brady's home studio.
The eponymous La Sera is the result of these sessions. With a dozen fresh tracks, La Sera muses on death, love, and love lost within the span of two minute choiral pop blisters. The phantasmic quality of Goodman's voice takes hold of the contradictorily upbeat "You're Going to Cry," while "Dove Into Love" seems to send time into drifting slow motion, enveloped by a wave of guitar strums. The lilting and delicate "Hold," meanwhile, tells the story of two people hugging each other to death. Hardly Art will release the full-length in early 2011, preceded by the limited 7" for "Never Come Around" out today.
La Sera is: Katy Goodman (bass, vox), Jenn Prince (guitar, vox) and Jonathan Weinberg (drums, vox, keys).
Jeffertitti's Nile
Jeffertitti's Nile
During a stormy week of February, 2010, a Hypnotic River of Sound was birthed in a flooding home studio, deep within Topanga Canyon, California. Sparks & black water were spewing out of the electric sockets as members of J E F F E R T I T T I 's N I L E rushed to save their tape reels and instruments from washing away in a cosmic soup. The universe has spoken and these recordings were mixed, mastered and cut to vinyl, in a strictly analog process, catching the attention of bands like the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (who invited them on tour) & publications like L.A. Record, O.C. Weekly, Foam, Tom Tom, L'Officiel (France), & Doingbird (Australia), who have all been swept by the currents of J E F F E R T I T T I 's N I L E.
Venue Information:
Union Transfer
1026 Spring Garden St.
Philadelphia, PA, 19123