Mark Linkous, the guiding force behind acclaimed rock act Sparklehorse, will release his fourth full-length album Sept. 26 via Astralwerks.
Mark Linkous, the guiding force behind acclaimed rock act Sparklehorse, will release his fourth full-length album Sept. 26 via Astralwerks. "Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain," his first set since 2001, was primarily recorded at Linkous' studio in western North Carolina. Additional sessions took place at David Fridmann's Guitar Box Studio outside of Buffalo, N.Y.
Among the contributors to the album are the Flaming Lips' Steven Drodz, who plays drums, guitar and synthesizer, Tom Waits and red-hot producer Danger Mouse. Waits guests on "Morning Hollow," an unreleased track from Sparklehorse's 2001 album "It's a Wonderful Life." "My kid brother played guitar on a few, and my sister-in-law played violin on a few, too," Linkous tells Billboard.com.
After hearing Danger Mouse's famed "Grey Album" mash-up of the Beatles and Jay-Z, Linkous invited the professed Sparklehorse fan to his studio to help with production. The new friendship yielded four tracks in which they share production credit. "I never really understood what it is he did, but working with him was great," Linkous says. "He'd grab some guitar parts from a certain song, filter it, put it in some different timing, and put it into another song."
"We're definitely going to do a proper collaboration at some point, like the Danger Doom record [on which Linkous played bass] -- but maybe something like Danger Horse. We're not sure what we're going to call it," he adds.
Linkous describes "Light Years" as "way more poppyier" and "a little more haphazard" than prior efforts. "There are some nice mistakes, and things that are not totally right," he says. "I guess lyrically, I would have liked it to be more ambitious, and a little deeper."
A short U.S. tour, including a stop at the Austin City Limits Festival, is in the works, to be followed by a European run in October.
Here is the track listing for "Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain":
"Don't Take My Sunshine Away"
"Getting It Wrong"
"Shade and Honey"
"See the Light"
"Return to Me"
"Some Sweet Day"
"Ghost in the Sky"
"It's Not So Hard"
"Knives of Summertime"
"Dreamt For Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain"