molina & johnson — self-titled

Molina & Johnson — self-titled.  Out today on Secretly Canadian.

One of my favorite things in the world is when musicians I enjoy enjoy the company of other musicians I enjoy.  For example, it delights me immensely whenever Mike Doughty and Rhett Miller twitter at each other.  I love that Patterson took 2/4ths of Centro-matic on tour with him this past summer.  Two Cow Garage nodding to Glossary on “Humble Narrator”. Ben Nichols taking Todd Beene out pretty much permanently with Lucero. I dig when people say, “We’re touring together because we love each other’s music.”  I like musicians enjoying each other’s company and work; I think those relationships are interesting and sometimes odd, and I like that they often lead to strange collaborations.

So when I found out early this year that Jason Molina (of Magnolia Electric Co. and the late Songs:Ohia) and the über-prolific Will Johnson (Centro-matic, South San Gabriel, the Screwtopians of “Patterson Hood & the Screwtopians”, touring drummer for the Monsters of Folk, recording under his own name when he can’t round up any of his bands or frequent collaborators; Will, when do you sleep?) had gotten together for ten days in Texas in February and recorded an album, I was beyond delighted.  Molina’s haunting songwriting skills with Johnson’s ear for weird-but-gorgeous sounds?  Bring that on, man.

And Secretly Canadian actually did bring it on this fall, and it’s utterly as fabulous as I expected to be.  It’s got a wild, rough sound and it’s a terrifically secretive and intricate swooping thing, with crushing delicate lyrics; it’s beautiful.  There are lots of words in the world, but beautiful is really the best one to describe this disc.  Centro-matic specifically and anything Will Johnson’s involved in generally are not for everyone — Will likes noise, and as with Megafaun, I often forgive him this and always love him anyway — but he can find the beauty in noise, too, and that’s some of what this album is.  Wild, noisy, beautiful.  I found it utterly stunning.  Sleeper of the year, hands down.

[Molina & Johnson — “Almost Let You In”] 4MB, .mp3.

Now if Will and Patterson would just stop writing and touring long enough to cough up their hinted-at-but-never-delivered concept album about LBJ, that would be awesome.  Concept album about LBJ.  That makes me laugh every time I think about it.  What nerds.

In other news, Suburban Home Records is going to distribute Red Collar’s 2009 Pilgrim both on CD and on vinyl, which is awesome because Suburban Home rocks and Red Collar rocks and I’m thrilled to see them connect.

MP3s are for sampling purposes only; if you enjoy what you hear, please support the artists by purchasing their music. Files are available for a limited time only. If you represent an artist or a label and would prefer that I remove a link to an mp3, please email me at asdonkar at gmail dot com and I will immediately remove the file.

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