My Morning Jacket: Let’s Hear It from the Band
In the current issue of Relix, longtime My Morning Jacket scribe William Bowers (whose essay on the group was featured in Da Capo’s Best Music Writing 2004) waxes poetic on My Morning Jacket’s new album Circuital. The band members also offer their thoughts in a companion piece. While an excerpt appears here be sure to pick up the June issue of Relix for much more from My Morning Jacket.
This past October, the band played five shows at New York City’s Terminal 5 (T5), devoting the first set of each night to playing one of its albums—in sequential order—followed by a second set of rarities and covers from the designated album’s time period.
Tom “Two-Tone” Blankenship (bass): We got together at Jim’s house a week or two before those shows and then spent four or five days going through all of it together. I’d say we were already doing half of it on the road. I think it ended up being 99 songs.
Jim James (vocals/guitar): I look back on our albums and there are several that have one or two tracks I’d take off if I was making the record now. But that was the me back then and, for some reason, he thought the song should be on there—so part of me has to respect that. I feel comfortable about it because I know—with every record we make—we are always pouring everything we have into it until we feel it is completely done.
Tom: I remember thinking about the certain song orders that we did [for the albums]. I remember when we got done playing the main set of At Dawn and Jim made the comment, “Why did we end the record with ‘Strangulation?’” It’s such an odd way to end the record. I think having different emotions attached to songs [was a surprise, too].
Patrick Hallahan (drums): We had a lot of unexpected things happen—just how emotional everybody got about reliving those moments. I wasn’t in the band for the first two albums but I was a friend, a fan and on the periphery of everything because I was roommates with the guys. It was triggering memories of old friends that have passed, ex-girlfriends. There were just all these nascent effects from going through all these songs. It was like looking through a family album.
Jim: It was like we were talking to holograms of ourselves from the past and they were telling us how we were—some of it we didn’t like and it was strange to look back on, but most of it we felt happy and proud of.
Tom: Playing songs off those first two records at Terminal 5 really felt like stepping back in time. It felt like I was in some little, tiny, smoky club in Holland and it was 10 or 11 years before.
Jim: It was surprising to live by the rules we had set for ourselves so long ago. The way you make a record when you are 21 years old is far different from the way you make one when you are 32 and so on.
Patrick: It ended up teaching me a lot about the band I had forgotten and helped me to understand who I am, who we are, what our roles are [in the band].
Tom: The journey seems to happen a lot quicker than it really did happen. In that moment [onstage at T5], I realized, “Holy shit, it’s been a long time.” It really has been a journey and a long, long process to get from there to where we are now.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
Dame shares a song from her new EP Preventions of Heartbreak.
Golden Bloom stopped by Relix to perform a tune from their latest EP No Day Like Today.
The Chapin Sisters share an tune from their new album A Date With the Everly Brothers.
Minneapolis-based Night Moves share a song from their record, Colored Emotions, live at Relix.
Cloud Cult share a song from their latest album live at Relix.
The Giving Tree Band enjoy a spring day on the Relix rooftop, while performing a classic Grateful Dead tune.
Canadian singer-songwriter Hayden performs a duet with his sister-in-law Lou Canon. The song appears on Us Alone his first record on Broken Social Scene’s Arts & Crafts Productions.
The Milk Carton Kids share the first song from their new album, The Ash & Clay.
Here is the new video from Serbian guitar ace Ana Popovic. “Object Of Obsession” appears on her latest album Can You Stand The Heat.
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