Alt-country veteran Jay Farrar will release a new, 23-track studio album, "Terroir Blues" on June 24. Marking the debut release through his own Act/Resist imprint via Artemis, the former Uncle Tupelo/
Alt-country veteran Jay Farrar will release a new, 23-track studio album, "Terroir Blues" on June 24. Marking the debut release through his own Act/Resist imprint via Artemis, the former Uncle Tupelo/Son Volt principal's forthcoming disc will be comprised of new originals, instrumental pieces, and alternate takes recorded in late 2002 and early 2003.
"I was using some albums that I like -- [The Beatles'] 'Revolver,' [Neil Young's] 'Tonight's the Night' -- as touchstones," the singer/songwriter said in a statement. Inspired by both his father's passing last summer and recent current events, several Farrar compositions -- including "No Rolling Back," "Hard Is the Fall," and "Heart on the Ground" -- get multiple takes, during which he balances rock and country approaches.
The set was recorded with a core group of musicians that includes multi-instrumentalist Mark Spencer from the Blood Oranges, former Son Volt pedal steel player Eric Heywood, Superchunk drummer Jon Wurster, and St. Louis-based guitarist/bassist John Horton. Brian Henneman of the Bottle Rockets also guests on one song, "Fool King's Crown," playing electric slide sitar.
According to Act/Resist, "Terroir Blues" boasts an acoustic-based sound where delicate folk songs are fused with short snippets of sonic dissonance, which Farrar refers to as "space junk." On bridging melodic tracks like "All Your Might," "Hanging on to You," and "California" with experimental noise and backwards sound effects, Farrar says, "I think of musical sounds played in reverse as a legitimate musical tool and not a studio trick."
As for Act/Resist, Farrar says the origin of the name is the combination of "two words I thought I could live with. It's got the feel of socialist revolt. The label came about as I saw a systematic reality in the music business. Artists get dropped and labels go out of business every day. I want to make sure that there is an outlet for my music."
Farrar hasn't fully solidified his touring plans but will play a one-off show May 28 at New York's Joe's Pub.