Trey Anastasio’s Traveler: Track by Track
Photo by René Huemer
Trey Anastasio recently previewed his latest album, Traveler, on Siruis XM’s Jam On program. Anastasio spoke about each track’s backstory, revealing some interesting details about some of them. Here’s a recap of what Trey had to say about each of the songs.
For more on the album, be sure to read our recent conversation with Anastasio
Trey mentioned that the album opener was a kind of nod to Brian Wilson, whom he considers a genius. The intro, in particular, reminds Trey of Wilson’s work, with its xylophone and piano arrangements.
Let Me Lie
Trey mentioned that this song had been around for a while. Phish tried to do it for their last record but it just didn’t make the cut [although it appears on the Party Time bonus disc in the Joy box set]. It was written by Trey and longtime Phish lyricist Tom Marshall at a cabin the woods in upstate New York. Anastasio said that he loves to sing it because it reminds him of a lot of personal things in his life. While the song has been recorded a couple of times before, Trey believes this is an exciting version because it is the one song on the record that he recorded with a bunch of musicians he has never played with before, such as Bryan Devendorf and Matt Berninger of the National and Kori Gardner of Mates of State.
Trey says to listen for the organ, which Ray Paczkowski played in a big empty room. Anastasio wrote the song with Tom Marshall, though he insisted on changing some of Marshall’s lyrics so that the song would better fit his intended meaning. Trey elaborated on this point, saying that he and Marshall often disagree on the meaning of lyrics, but that this is “where the magic happens.” Trey believes that if both he and Tom find different meaning in the lyrics then a third person will also be able to find their own meaning.
Land of Nod
Trey wrote this track by himself. He describes the ““Land of Nod” as “a place that’s easy to get to and not so easy to come home from.” The sounds that are reminiscent of background singers are actually theremins being played in harmony.
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The Milk Carton Kids share the first song from their new album, The Ash & Clay.
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