Do you dislike instant gratification? Well DON'T READ THIS! This item is for you digital media-loving types in the crowd - don't all raise your hands at once. Instead, just let the good news soak in for the next few seconds - not only have we just released Jim O'Rourke's entire back catalog of pop songs in digital format (exclusively via FLAC downloads; high-five, nerds! And no we don't have the ratio details - sorry, nerds), but now Jim's new album of great new pop songs, Simple Songs, is streaming on NPR's First Listen!
It's insane to think that it has been nearly 14 years since Insignificance came out - the bitterness and vitriol and sweet, streamlined rock n roll still feels so fresh! Times have moved fast, just like they did back then; with the masterful and massively popular song-cycle Eureka only a couple years behind him, Jim's new inspirations were deemed not Eureka 2-y enough for some listeners out there - but by the time that 2009's The Visitor revisited the instrumental feel of '97's pop pastoral Bad Timing, we were being asked when Jim'd have another record like Insignificance! Shit. But now, you can catch up to Jim's return to the realm of epic pop music deluxe (vocals now included) with the First Listen thing!
If we haven't yet expressed what a contrarian perv ol' Jim is, then you might well take the title of Simple Songs at face value - sucker! O'Rourke has advanced the lush hallmarks of his production technique with the mad-scientist fusions in his songwriting and the jocularity and darkness of his lyrics to make an album of sprawling, orchestrated, neo-classic pop songs that manage to avoid the generic implications of all these descriptors and whatever more you might come up with! In other words, Simple Songs is a record that will stand the test of time by continuing to grow and change and elude simple meanings over repeated listening. It's gonna be a fulfilling life with a record like this in your head and on your turntable - and that life starts on May 19th. But you can get a head start on it RIGHT NOW - head on over to NPR and listen for yourself!