It seems that from the whole Emeralds trio, Mark McGuire was the one who was always able to elicit most emotions from his instrument-- a gentle breeze of guitar-driven nostalgia, the human element which both stood against and complimented Steve Hauschildt's and John Elliott's synthetic soundworlds. "Noctilucence," off Mark's newest EP sees him playing his trademark, multilayered Göttschingian groove, but this time with synthesizers and drum machines in full swing. The colorful electronic/string panorama is futher expanded by soft techno beat played at a relaxed, unhurried speed, allowing the listener to hear McGuire's magic unveil in regular intervals.
Noctilucence EP is out November 11 on Dead Oceans.
Mark McGuire's making one last push before the All-Star break, knocking three in a row out of the park. That's right: McGuire's going long. Three, four, even five hundred feet-- or, to break this tired analogy, twelve, eight, even eighteen minutes. On his most recent release, the just-upped-to-Bandcamp Moss Agate (previously a limited CDR), the venerable Cleveland-bred guitarist continues his hot streak of expansive meditations built with guitars and synthesizers weaving amongst each other, nodding to krautrock and balearic dance all the while. Where McGuire's last couple release could, at times, nearly be called pop music, Moss Agate sounds a little more like the stuff he did with Emeralds: alien, abstract, very in the zone.
Moss Agate is available now on McGuire's Bandcamp.
In anticipation for his upcoming album on Dead Oceans, titled Along The Way, Mark McGuire compiled us a 90-minute mix of italo, French synth pop, plus some Prefab Sprout. McGuire submitted a few sentences about the mix:
To start off 2014 on a good note, here is the latest brew of posi party jams, mixed live from the home planet of Earth by The Road Chief. With a brief introduction by Manly P Hall, reminding us all to hold on to the joy of life and to fuse it into everything we encounter, the party kicks off.. First up is a brand-new remix of my song "In Search Of The Miraculous" by good friend and producer Jurgen Desmet aka DISCOBALLISTIC, followed by a new song from my favorite band ever PREFAB SPROUT!! After that, the party kicks into full gear with Road Chief classix old and new! Be alive NOW and turn your next shindig into a truly miraculous event!
Check out the tracklist to the mix after the jump. Along The Way comes out February 4th via Dead Oceans, hear "The Instinct" below.
A few months back we wrote about a new Mark McGuire album in the works. Today McGuire has announced the release date and tracklist of Along the Way, his first solo LP since 2011's Get Lost. The record finds the former Emeralds member continuing to experiment with the more densely arranged and composed textures he employed in his most recent work with Inner Tube and last year's digital EP, Surrogate Channels. "The Instinct," the new single from the upcoming record, is a sprawling tour de force. Begining with his distinctive palm-muted guitar playing, the track introduces drum patterns and basslines, providing an anchor for some pretty ferocious shredding. According to McGuire, the album is a concept record detailing an "odyssey through the vast, unknown regions of the mind." But what remains of the mind after hearing his facemelting guitar solos?
Along The Way is due out Feburary 4 via Dead Oceans. Listen to "the Instinct" below, and dig the evocative imagery that accompanies it.
Cleveland-based guitarist and former Emeralds member Mark McGuire donned his DJ Road Chief moniker to deliver the best non-dessert Valentine's Day gift I've ever gotten: his extended cover of Zapp's classic love jam "I Want To Be Your Man," in loving tribute to both the ladies and funk songwriter Roger Troutman. Says McGuire about his love for one of funk's, and Ohio's, greats:
"This cover of "I Want To Be Your Man" was recorded as a part of an upcoming tribute I am doing for one of my biggest heroes, Roger Troutman. Roger's contributions to music through his band Zapp, and his solo career as a songwriter, live performer, and producer have placed him among the greats that inspired Roger."
McGuire even dons one of Troutman's iconic tools, the Talkbox, stressing that he did not use auto-tune to "save Rog some spinning in his grave about the whole auto-tune thing in general." Also, the four-minute mark contains one of the better mid-song monologues in recent memory. Happy V-Day, y'all.
Call it a hot streak. Mark McGuire has been involved with two of the year's sweetest jams-- Inner Tube's S/T with Spencer Clarke and his native Emeralds' latest Just to Feel Anything-- and then decides to quietly post a Bandcamp EP. Surrogate Channels isn't as much a leap forward as a lateral move, pondering and even inverting ideas that McGuire posed in rapid fire during his prolific period a couple years back. Between some instrumental variation thanks to keys and percussion-- phew, no monk chants-- and sparse, deliberate arrangements, McGuire continues his 2012 transition from jamming to composing. As evidenced by the title track, McGuire is still incredibly interested in chill, complex melodicism-- kind of like an ambient Pat Metheny but, uh, actually good.
Surrogate Channels is out now on his recently-forged Bandcamp.