Doesn’t it kinda feel like “experimental guitarists” are sometimes just dribbling out of a damn tap in every dank basement-venue in town? Everywhere you go, some guy and girl and his or her mom has a looper and some chunky, blinking doodads velcro’ed to a pedalboard and one of those glow-in-the-dark EBow things like Billy Corgan or whatever. And it’s all pretty neat and stuff, but you kinda get the feeling that all that noisemaking junk is just doing all the work for them.
But then… once in a while, you catch the work of a humble craftsperson like (former Swans guitarist) Norman Westberg, and it kinda starts to seem like maybe HARDLY ANYONE ELSE really knows jack shit about this seemingly-ubiquitous instrument.
Good thing, then, that the folks over at Room40 have been hard at work re-issuing all of Westberg’s recent solo guitar works (which he had previously been simply burning to CD-R and selling on Etsy) so that we can all bask in the honest-to-goddamn goodness of his workmanlike approach to coaxing a myriad of beguiling and alien tones from an axe, amp, and a few basic stompboxes. In fact, the final re-release of the bunch, Jasper Sits Out — an elegiac ocean of ebbing and flowing looped fragments composed and titled in memorial of a “Westberg family mascot who has now sadly departed” — was just issued last week on CD/digital.
And to help commemorate the occasion, director Paul W. Rankin has created a sprawling visual accompaniment to the album’s final track, “A Particular Tuesday.” His graceful clip, which attempts to transmogrify the song’s gently lapping waves of sustained harmonic undulations into information your eyeballs can understand, is EXCLUSIVELY STREAMING for your dreamy and bittersweet pleasure down below. Check it out, and pick up your “completely remastered” copy (which also features a “bonus piece recorded exclusively for this edition”) right over here. (Only… maybe save a buck or two for all those other, would-be guitar-droners whose open cases you’re tripping over on the streets out there? Who knows — with a little encouragement, they could be another Westberg.)
Jasper Sits Out tracklisting:
01. Jasper Sits Out
02. Homeset Trunc
03. A Particular Tuesday