Mike Watt (between shows playing bass with the reformed Stooges), Thollem McDonas (legendary solo pianist, member of Tsigoti, collaborator with Stefano Scodanibbio, etc ad infinitum), John Dieterich (guitarist for Deerhoof, Natural Dreamers), and Tim Barnes (skins on Silver Jews, Jim O’Rourke, Text of Light) hunkered down at Post-Consumer studio and made a right proper gem of an album. They call it You Are Always on Our Minds.Veering between the tightly woven and the completely unhinged, trading deep gulfs of ponderous melancholy with gentle, fractured pop fairytales, The Hand To Man Band keeps the listener guessing without ever completely abandoning their own special brand of earthy hall-of-mirrors music. The internal/external dialogues set up by the band evoke train dreams, the open road, and the warmth and familiarity of a bed at home. They travel from psychotropic jazz to konked-out funk to skronked-out dirges to alien transmissions to plaintive nocturnal pleas, sometimes in the course of a single tune. These songs contradict and then coalesce before arriving finally as an unexpected gift, a measured unit, a fully formed whole. When that happens, that razor’s edge shift from near-chaos to strength, power and beauty, hold on tight, listen, because it is truly something to behold.
Tim Barnes (skins on Silver Jews, Jim O’Rourke, Text of Light) John Dieterich (guitarist for Deerhoof, Gorge Trio, Natural
Dreamers) Mike Watt (fIREHOSE, Minutemen, Stooges, spielgusher, et al) Thollem McDonas (legendary solo pianist, member of Tsigoti, collaborator with Stefano Scodanibbio, Nels Cline, etc ad infinitum)...more