By Lindsey Petterson
Artist: Ty Segall
Album: Ty Segall
Release Date: January 27th, 2017
Ty Segall recently released his 9th studio album titled Ty Segall on January 27, 2017 (not to be confused with his first self titled album in 2008). In 2016, he released Emotional Mugger, a concept album that was released with a website that had videos to explain his concept, “emotional mugging”. This year’s release wasn’t as theatrical, but it was recorded with a full band in the studio, who are referred to as The Freedom Band.
The album has 10 tracks, the last one being a 12-second “Untitled” song. The first track sets the tone for the whole album with an obvious influence from 70s rock. The fuzzy guitar mixed with simplistic lyrics is a solid flashback for long term Ty Segall fans who cannot get enough of that FUZZ. There is a clear focus on the instrumentation, specifically the sick guitar harmonies, and not so much the simplistic yet entertaining lyrics.
“Warm Hands (Freedom Returned)”, a 10-minute track, and possibly the greatest of the album, has structurally messy guitar parts until the groove goes from garage glam rock to a quiet jazz influenced break. After the calmness, the full band sound comes back and this pattern continues, making the listener feel like waking up from a dream and going back to sleep on repeat. Something about sitting through a 10-minute song sounds undesirable, but Segall captures the listener’s attention by constantly providing engaging sounds through the entire track.
“Talkin” is an interesting break from the constant in and out of the previous track. In this song, Segall is describing how he is fed up with someone who cannot shut up, possibly an ex lover, as this is a lyrical theme seen throughout the album. “The Only One” has a clear metal influence, specifically with the cleaner sounding guitars. Segall is known for his fuzzy garage rock sound, so this track is an interesting contribution to the diverse sounds of the whole album.
“Thank You Mr. K” is a fast paced jam starting with a psychedelic sound that has abrupt instrumentation and glass shattering, until it ends with a more punk influenced instrumentation and vocals. This video, from Segall’s website, is the sound of the glass breaking in the tune “Thank You Mr. K”
A jolting transition into the next song written for his “beautiful lazy, orange color lady”. This song is beautifully sweet, yet seems to disrupt the flow of the songs leading up to it. Diversity is important in any artist’s career, or a single album, but “Papers” feels out of place, even after the calm acoustic song “Orange Color Queen”. The 9th track, “Take Care (To Comb Your Hair)” brings back the fuzz and musically interesting concepts of the rest of the album.
The acoustic tracks allow the listener to take a break from the garage rock groove the rest of the album has, but seem to be lacking compared to the other tracks. Although the flow of the album has it’s ups and downs, the diversity shows Segall’s musical growth and for that reason, this album is worth a listen.