John Vanderslice Life and Death of an American Fourtracker

Formerly of MK Ultra, genius pop-wunderkind musician, studio guru/engineer and writer John Vanderslice knows how to create a real timeless gem of an album. For his third release, Vanderslice takes the listener on a slightly Who and Radiohead-esque concept album journey through the mind of a dishevelled and obsessed musician, one who eventually ends his own life tragically at a young age. The existential woes we are put through are dark and enlightening, and the character's internal dwelling aspects are almost surreal, as they hit hard if enough attention is paid to it. However, the affair is not overshadowed by a grimoire or the morose. Musically, through the awkward usage of various electronics, strange rhythms and bliss-soaked poking guitars, the listener is carried through on a lighter cloud of tonality, and the sheer brilliance of it all floats and relies upon Vanderslice’s unique narrative vocal style. The album and the story are thus quite easy to follow and makes for a spiritually rewarding listen. A definite "must have” for the person who likes their thinking pop music. (Barsuk)