M. Ward releasing solo album in April. Will I mention his “honeyed croon”?? Find out within!

M. Ward releasing solo album in April. Will I mention his "honeyed croon"?? Find out within!

Oh man, M. Ward. What HAPPENED?

Remember when this dude was awesome? Like, Transfiguration of Vincent-awesome? I mean, even right up through Post-War, I was right there with him; that shit sounded legit. Then he just kinda… got all cartoony on us. Didn’t he?! I mean, 2009’s Hold Time was “meh” if you ask me. And hooking up with Zooey Whatshername to do that cheeky She & Him nonsense and legitimately trying to put good songs into that abysmal Monsters of Folk thing?? Come on, man. Shouldn’t Mac and Laura be getting on the phone with him and being like “dude…”??? What’s up, Mac and Laura??? Oh well, maybe in brighter economic times, they would.

Buy hey, speaking of Mac and Laura, Merge is all set to release Ward’s sixth album, entitled A Wasteland Companion, on April 10, after which he’ll be hitting the road in North America for a while. The album features a whole Kanye-load of guests — eighteen musicians in all, including Deschanel, Mike Mogis, and Steve Shelley(!). It was also recorded in eight studios in and around Portland, Omaha, New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, and Bristol UK, so you know it’s gonna sound awesome. As for the title and any thematic/lyrical significance that you might want to keep in mind when his voice is accosting you in Starbucks this spring, Ward elaborates, “between now and when I made Hold Time there has been a lot of traveling which requires a lot of reckoning with what to leave behind and what to carry — material and otherwise — and thinking about what I want versus what I need, creatively and otherwise. I wanted to get a reflection of that on the album. It was a process of stripping away my security blanket, which is the same four walls I always record in.” See? A lean, taut, solitary, eighteen-player, eight-studio travel album. Makes total sense. Lord, he was born a ramblin’ man, etc.

A Wasteland Companion tracklisting:

01. Clean Slate (For Alex & El Goodo)
02. Primitive Girl
03. Me and My Shadow
04. Sweetheart
05. I Get Ideas
06. The First Time I Ran Away
07. A Wasteland Companion
08. Watch the Show
09. There’s a Key
10. Crawl After You
11. Wild Goose
12. Pure Joy

Tourdates:

02.02.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery
04.11.12 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore
04.12.12 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Cocoanut Grove Ballroom *
04.13.12 - Indio, CA - Coachella
04.14.12 - Santa Barbara, CA - SoHO
04.16.12 - San Diego, CA - Belly Up *
04.17.12 - Phoenix, AZ - Crescent Ballroom *
04.18.12 - Flagstaff, AZ - The Orpheum *
04.20.12 - Indio, CA - Coachella
05.05.12 - Portland, ME - State Theatre #
05.06.12 - Burlington, VT - Higher Ground #
05.07.12 - New Haven, CT - Toads Place #
05.08.12 - Boston, MA - House of Blues #
05.11.12 - New York, NY - Webster Hall #
05.12.12 - Philadelphia, PA -Union Transfer #
05.13.12 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club #
05.15.12 - Durham, NC - Duke Performances at Page Auditorium #
05.16.12 - Athens, GA - Georgia Theatre #
05.17.12 - Atlanta, GA - Buckhead Theatre #
05.22.12 - Chicago, IL - Vic Theatre #
05.24.12 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue #

* fIREHOSE
# Lee Ranaldo Band

• M. Ward: http://mwardmusic.com
• Merge: http://www.mergerecords.com

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