Saturday, 4 April 2020

David Garland ‎– Control Songs (1986)

Style: Avantgarde, Art Rock
Format: CD, Vinyl
Label: Review Records

01.   I Am With You
02.   Very Popular
03.   The Stick Figure
04.   I Am An I-Beam Girder
05.   My Pony's Falling
06.   On Planet X
07.   Forest Fractures
08.   TV Can Teach Me
09.   Clocks
10.   Furniture
11.   Keep In Touch
12.   Don't Shoot
13.   Bad Advice
14.   Another Mistake
15.   Growth
16.   Hist'ry
17.   Simba

Vocals – Meredith Monk
Backing Vocals – Anne Garland
Baritone Vocals – John Alexander
Bass Guitar, Vocals – Mark Abbott
Accordion – Guy Klucevsek
Soprano Vocals – Nancy Gassner
Tenor Vocals – Wayne Diana
Trumpet, Kazoo, Vocals – Clive Smith
Turntables – Christian Marclay
Alto Saxophone, Vocals, Game Calls, Bird Squawks – John Zorn
Fairlight Computer Musical Instrument – Cherina Mastrantones, Clive Smith
Producer, Arranged By, Mixed By, Music By, Words By – David Garland
Vocals, Accordion, Piano, Organ, Synthesizer, Guitar, Bass, Electric Guitar, Recorder, Psaltery, Glockenspiel, Trumpet, Flutes, Programmed By – David Garland

David Garland is one of a rather small group of experimental singer/song writers. They are not cut from same bolt of cloth as, say, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell or James Taylor. Instead, Garland, along with the likes of Arthur Russell, Shelly Hirsch, Anna Homler, and a select few others, combine the experimental tradition that gave us the likes of John Cage, Morton Feldman, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Meredith Monk, Laurie Anderson, Glenn Branca and John Zorn. Not that Garland's music sounds like any of these, though both Monk and Zorn, along with downtown folks such as Christian Marclay and Guy Klucevseik help out. Using a song form and an essentially tonal idiom, his songs are quirky, if not totally bent. The lyric content includes political and social commentary, but is often personal, whimsical, and decidedly oblique and non-linear. The catchy, even lovely opening "I Am with You" with its spliced voice is worth the price of admission alone, but this re-issue includes six songs not available on the original album. Quirky but necessary listening.
David Ashcraft / exposé

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