Published Jan 01, 2006It's a little too easy to say that Ian Blurton's recent hairy exterior is a reflection of his music's increasingly untamed tendencies, but it does make sense in a weird way. If anyone is fully prepared to fight a one-man war against boring guitar rock, it's Blurton. Blurtonia, his second pseudo-solo release since retiring Change of Heart in 1997, is arguably the most flat-out scorching session he has ever committed to tape. The fact that it has taken almost a full year for the album to receive a national release hasn't diminished Blurton's view of this latest incarnation. "It's invigorating to have someone care enough about the band to put the record out," he says. "I guess with the first album, the focus was more on me. On this one we definitely wanted to show that this is a four-piece rock band. We did the whole thing in about seven days."
Based on that approach, Blurtonia has fewer glimpses of Blurton's fondness for studio experimentation. It's also surprising that he handed over production duties to Daryl Smith now that Blurton has become one of the country's most respected producers. "Producing my work and producing someone else's are really two separate things for me," Blurton says. "It can be hard work doing someone else's record, so getting someone like Daryl, who I've learned so much from, really makes things easier." With Blurtonia now rightfully poised to carry on Change of Heart's massive legacy, it begs the question, is the new album simply part of a louder and faster progression? Blurton tends to agree, but then again, the muse will always dictate.
"I don't think there were ever restrictions in Change of Heart, except when money started becoming a factor. I've always found restrictions to be a drag, so while we may be rocking really hard right now, we also like to do Sun Ra covers when we rehearse. It's just that there's a lot of false rock out there right now, so it's good to know that what we're doing might help counteract the Creeds of the world. We're playing rock music because we think we do it well."