Nieuwe Vinyl Releases
John Cale Poptical Illusion
Poptical Illusion
2 LP
Label: Domino
14 juni 2024

Don’t be fooled by POPtical Illusion, the playful title of John Cale’s second album in just over a year: He remains angry, still incensed by the willful destruction that unchecked capitalists and unrepentant conmen have hoisted upon the wonders of this world and the goodness of its people. On POPtical Illusion, he burrows mostly alone into mazes of synthesizers and samples, organs and pianos with words that, as far as Cale goes, constitute a sort of swirling hope, a sage insistence that change is yet possible. “If you’ve done things you’d wished you’ve never done,” he sings during the irrepressible “Davies and Wales,” a buoyant bit of New Wave-meets-Brian Wilson joy, “think of the things you’re going to do tonight.” Produced by Cale and longtime artistic partner Nita Scott in his Los Angeles studio, POPtical Illusion is the work of someone certainly not ignoring the rage or the reasons for it but, instead, trying to turn toward the future—exactly as Cale, of course, always has.

Cale has often said that something shifted inside his mind during the pandemic, realizing that, nearing 80, he was living and working through something that many of his past contemporaries weren’t. He wanted to document it. He wrote more than 80 songs in a period of a little over a year, collectively surveying the range of human experience in the process—humor bled into frustration, regret gave way to forgiveness, sadness tangled with surrealism. What’s more, Cale has never relegated himself to the old guard, to sitting on the sidelines and kvetching about modernity and the way things used to be done. The classically trained violist who studied with Cage and Copland has long been a hip-hop zealot, especially the creative ways it wields technology to create multi-dimensional textures or build surprising melodies. POPtical Illusion synthesizes those emotions and enthusiasms into a dozen electronic playgrounds, Cale’s magisterial voice webbing across it all with puns and insights, grievances and quips, life and some version of truth.

John Cale has always been a musician of the times, helping to usher in titanic shifts in sound and culture. His curiosity about the way electronics could be more than a gimmick in rock music served as an inspiration to an uncountable number of crucial scenes. On POPtical Illusion, Cale once again stands as a musician of these times. He looks at the orchestrated turmoil of recent history, furrows his brow in disgust, and then turns on his heels toward a future, even if he—like all of the rest of us, really—doesn’t know just what he’ll find or who exactly he’ll be there. He’s simply happy to be going toward it all.

€ 34,00
Categorie:Nieuwe Vinyl Releases
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