Former Wilco multi-instrumentalist Jay Bennett will release his next solo album, "The Magnificent Defeat," Sept. 26 through Rykodisc.
Former Wilco multi-instrumentalist Jay Bennett will release his next solo album, "The Magnificent Defeat," Sept. 26 through Rykodisc. The follow-up to a pair of releases in 2004, the 13-track album was apparently pared down from 70 tunes written over the last three years.
"In retrospect, I realize that the primary catalyst was a sequence of unfortunate events in my life," Bennett says. "Four close relatives passing away in the span of one year, major illness in my immediate family, going through a divorce brought me to a low point in my life ... But it kicked off a creative flurry of songwriting and recording."
Collaborating with David Vandervelde, Jonathan Pines and "some other hand-picked and trusted Urbana [Ill.] folks" like Edward Burch, Tim Edwards, Ian Fell and Justin Walden, Bennett embraced a number of musical instruments, including seven Hammond organs, a bowed Kay bass and a Playskool tambourine.
"Like most studio obsessives, I have the requisite arsenal of vintage guitars, both acoustic and electric, and a lot of keyboards, but these aren't even necessarily my preferences," he says. "No, I'm 'Master of the garage/yard sale.' And over the years, I have put together 'The Land of Misfit Instruments.'"
The result is a melodic collection of heavily rhythm-based songs, each with something twisted or particularly DIY in the production. Two songs from the album, "5th Grad" and "Replace You,” are featured on Bennett's MySpace page.
As chronicled in the Wilco documentary "I Am Trying To Break Your Heart," Bennett left the Chicago group shortly before "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" was completed. "I'm in a great place now after this whole experience, and am as proud of this record -- if not more than -- as anything else I've done to date,” he says.
Here is the track list for "The Magnificent Defeat":
"Slow Beautifully Seconds Faster"
"The Palace at 4AM"
"Out All Night"
"Survey the Damage"
"I'm Feelin' Fine"
"Good as Gold"