posted November 12th, 2013

After 40 some years, the legend of Michael Yonkers has finally ascended to it's much deserved highly estimable levels. The saga dates back to the mid-late 1960s, beginning with a near miss of wide-spread, major-label success followed by years of intense creativity with not a whole lot of acknowledgement from outside ears. At least, until Yonkers' Microminiature Love, originally intended for release on Sire in 1968, got issued in 2003 - suddenly, a new psychedelic window opened in the sky, and like any good drug, the desire for more of it naturally grew. Drag City aided in the movement by reissuing Lovely Gold alongside Galactic Zoo Disks in 2010, and now have the lovely pleasure of announcing a double-dose of Michael Yonkers come January 21st, 2014 - the country-fried Michael Lee Yonkers, and the intimate living-room recordings from 1973, Borders Of My Mind.

These records come from the other side of his musical personality, less plugged-in electronically and more acoustically reverberant - and filled with quizzical, beauteous moments and melodies. Michael was influenced by his working-class surroundings and the country-music radio playing soft in the warehouse that he worked, and the result was a Michael Lee Yonkers, a "country" excursion with quotation marks intact. It was recorded at home, just like Borders of My Mind, which found Michael reunited with his old pre-Microminiature Love bandmate, Jim Woehle. Here, the shared space between these two collaborators turned the rootsy sound a bit wild, captured on Woehrle's full-track, mono, one quarter-inch reel-to-reel tape recorder with just one, bi-directional ribbon microphone. The placement of the mic renders Woehrle's piano, Yonkers' plaintive guitar playing, and the two's arcing vocal harmonies transcendent in a very real atmosphere, flourishing with post-psychedelic echoes. Both albums are unjustly-unheard classics for lovers of homespun astral folk!

The first good news of the future new year, here in the present day. Noise primitives, private-press gurus, and you, the general fan, rejoice: two new albums from Michael Yonkers begin your campaign for a weird new world in 2014!

Artists in this story: Michael Yonkers