Dan Melchior – ‘Plays ‘The Greys” LP [Ever / Never]

Here’s an artist to get obsessed over if you’re not already familiar. Dan Melchior has been peddling his unique form of lo-fi garage rock, blues and folk experiments for the last thirty years, primarily as a solo artist but never far from a band or collaboration release. And reflective of his solo work over the years, once you discover Melchior’s work you’ll soon be going down a rabbit-hole of his catalogue, branching off in to his various projects and shifting sounds based on new and old ideas or whatever concepts he can make music from.

Last month Dan Melchior ‘Plays The Greys’ dropped on Ever/Never, and is in fact an incredible starting point for such an expedition. This LP of thirteen tracks puts Melchior up there with the masters of lo-fi and modern blues, pushed through effects and recording techniques learned from musique concrète influencers as much as the shoegaze scene and modern day fuzz rockers.

The six-minute ‘Death Don’t Have No Mercy’ is a track composed around the passing of his wife Letha Rodman in 2014, and sits at the centre of the record as an anchor of emotion and guitar-induced electronic bliss. An odd combination that likely wasn’t the desired outcome, but that should tell you what kind of ride you’re in for.

It’s a brilliant listen, a melting-pot of our favourite elements of instrumentation and experimental effects based improvisational music creation. Take some time to check it out, no matter what angle you come at this record from you’re going to find something to to grab on to.

Check ‘Death Don’t Have No Mercy Below’ followed by quality press release from the label, with the bandcamp embed underneath that again. You can also head straight to his online shop for more releases and back catalogue here: http://danmelchior.bigcartel.com/

via Ever/Never
Dan Melchior is artist as perpetual motion machine. We could say “shark,” but Dan doesn’t sniff for blood in the water. Instead, he is inviting you to his private lake; his solace relies on his relentless creativity. Whether painting, writing, collaging or recording, Dan offers nothing less than words, images and sounds transmitted directly from his subconscious, but filtered through the rigorous process of a true artist. Dan’s latest offering is a superb collection of songs and sonic vignettes that dips down deep into life’s trenches. Here, where light has to fight to be noticed, misery, monotony and melancholy mingle and bleed into one another. Accordingly, Dan doesn’t play the blues, he plays the greys.

Plays The Greys is a patchwork album, but don’t let that imply carelessness. Each odd juxtaposition serves a purpose and illuminates its surroundings like a torch in the night. Part one and part two of the title track are perfect examples of Dan’s decidedly non-academic approach to musique concrete’s a-musical gestures. Field recordings bump up against back-porch guitar plucking that morphs into radio declarations by the good Christians among us. Praise be.

In more ways than one, “Death Has No Mercy” is the center of the album. Midway through its hazy meanderings, “Death…” jumps into an uptempo backwoods jaunt. It’s good to know that the guitar is always there, providing a means for expression and catharsis. Suffering in recent years through immense personal tragedy, Dan channels all that pain and helplessness into an extended rumination on grief and the challenge of living with permanent ache. So forget what I wrote earlier — Dan Melchior has indeed made a blues album, one fit for 2016, and beyond.