Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Elf Power Announces New Album Details

Download: Elf Power - "Great Society"
Download: Elf Power - "I Walked With the Zombie"
Download: Elf Power- "Nothing's Going to Happen"

Elf Power is set to release their latest, In Caves, on March 25th of this year. As you'll read below, the buzz has been that this album will be their most psychedelic in years. After 2006's Back to the Web, which was regarded as a disappointment, this sounds like a step in the right direction.

Here's the first part of the press release:

New album out worldwide on Rykodisc March 25,2008. Elf Power formed in 1994 and have spent the last 14 years releasing nine albums, two eps, a handful of singles, and touring America, Europe, and Japan. Elf Power’s ninth album blasts them past the familiar territories of beautiful records past – landing them on exciting new terrain. Granted, the Elves’ sound is still founded on the bedrock attributes that make them memorable: leader Andrew Rieger’s otherworldly lyrical stances and his easy way with the rare and amazing melody, their instrumentally-eclectic reappraisal of classic rock, and a propulsive rhythm section that’s tight as ever. “In a Cave”, though, finds them filtering their powerful live approach through a varied, experimental series of recording processes and approaches; the new album plays like a spirited, exploratory series of treatments on the tried-and-true Elf Power sound. Derek Almstead’s production balances the elements perfectly: lean and muscular with a layer of warmth overtop, he opens ample windows for the band to expand and explore all available spaces. Drummer/multi-instrumentalist Eric Harris returns to the fold for this record, and his rhythmic interaction with bassist Almstead provides the supportive spine for each tune; notice how the two bury a chugging Krautrock underpinning in the sing-song pop of “Paralyzed” and provide the swagger inherent to the marching fuzz-boogie of “Spiral Stairs”. Harris’ homemade “tape-organ” – a Thriftstore Mellotron, of sorts — assumes a starring role on several of these songs, enveloping the driving jams and harmonically-dense balladry in a loopy, warbly aura. Truly, this is one of the most psychedelic Elf Power records in years; droned-out, interstitial songs like “Window to Mars” and the Eno-esque “Heads of Dust, Hearts of Lust” lend a sense of wholeness to this diverse album, and glue the longer tracks together perfectly. Elf Power has been busy this year, touring steadily, and recording an album with folk rock legend Vic Chesnutt that will be released this coming fall, and the resultant instrumental cohesion shows; the interplay between Rieger’s twelve-string and Jimmy Hughes’ overdriven lead guitar is as subtle and important as ever. Present, too, are those strange sonic touches that have long made the band distinctive: that edifying layer of melody that comes courtesy of Heather Macintosh’s virtuoso cello-playing and Laura Carter’s accordion and Moog Synthesizer.

The rest of the press release can be read at on Elf Power's MySpace.

(April Wright)

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