Press Play, Record

Recent Interviews
  • Acute
  • AM
  • Aqueduct
  • Nicole Atkins
  • The Autumn Defense
  • Bears
  • Besnard Lakes
  • Benoit Pioulard
  • Big Sir
  • The Canvas Waiting
  • Cougar
  • Deerhunter
  • Loren Dent
  • The Earlies
  • Elanors
  • Explosions in the Sky
  • The Finches
  • Hammock
  • The Higher
  • The Hotel Alexis
  • The Inner Banks
  • Los Campesinos!
  • Lovedrug
  • Willy Mason
  • Math & Physics Club
  • New Buffalo
  • New Ruins
  • Pissed Jeans
  • The Postmarks
  • RTX
  • Rumskib
  • Marnie Stern
  • Strategy
  • The Submarines
  • Richard Swift
  • About Press Play and Record
  • Underwriting
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Meet the Staff
  • Contact Information
  • Our Myspace
  • Mundane Sounds
  • Retailers of Note
  • Darla Records
  • Parasol
  • Tonevendor
  • Websites of Note
  • Tiny Mix Tapes
  • In Love with These Times, In Spite of These Times
  • Lamestain!
  • Built on a Weak Spot
  • Captains Dead
  • Chickfactor
  • Gorilla vs. Bear
  • Soul Sides
  • You Ain't No Picasso
  • I Guess I'm Floating
  • My Old Kentucky Blog
  • Domino Rally
  • Erasing Clouds
  • Mapadaisical
  • Music for Kids Who Can't Read Good
  • Muzzle Of Bees
  • So Much Silence
  • Chromewaves
  • The Rich Girls Are Weeping
  • I am Fuel, You Are Friends
  • Site Feeds
  • Feedburner
  • AOL
  • Google
  • Yahoo!
  • Stephenhero "57 Stars of the Air Almanac"
    Wednesday, January 30, 2008

    Wow, talk about coming out of nowhere! Stephenhero is the ongoing project of Patrick Fitzgerald, the former lead singer of the wonderful and well-missed Kitchens of Distinction. But it's been several years since his last record, so I wondered if he even still made music. Glad to know that he is.

    If you have never experienced the utter brilliance of their 1991 album, The Death of Cool, you need to stop reading and discover this unfairly obscure masterpiece. It's one of the best records I've ever heard, period. After the band split, Fitzgerald formed different projects, Stephen Hero being the most notable. The music he released was quieter, mellower, and often instrumental--none of which ever reached the heights of The Death of Cool.

    Until now.

    57 Stars of the Air Almanac, now credited to Stephenhero, is a paraphrased return to The Death of Cool's majestic heights. I say he's "paraphrased" because these songs cover the same kind of lyrical themes, and are as emotionally powerful and painful as Death of Cool except...the powerful wall of guitar has been piano! We're talking about a guy who wrote beautifully melancholy lyrics on a par with Morrissey, tempered with the noise of My Bloody Valentine.

    When I read a few descriptions of this new record, I never would have expected such, would never have expected much, and, honestly, before I heard it, I was skeptical that he could really replicate his storied past without his powerful guitars. But Patrick can, Patrick has, and my mind has been...well...blown. Now, mind you, 57 Stars of the Air Almanac isn't trying to be Kitchens of Distinction mach 2, and I'm glad, because otherwise, it all would sound a bit too forced. Patrick was and is an excellent songwriter, and that's what is on display here. Whether it's a love song, or a not-in-love song, Patrick can write a song that aims for the jugular.

    I've rambled around a point, a very simple point, and that is this: Patrick Fitzgerald is one of the finest songwriters of our time, bar none. That he's released a potent and beautiful record in painful obscurity isn't his fault, nor should it be a reflection of the quality of his art. I've loved the man's music for nearly two decades. 57 Stars of the Air Almanac reminds me why I fell in love with his music in the first place: powerful words and beautiful music. And, well, "58 Stars" brings a tear to my eye every time. That's all that matters to me…

    Listen To: "58th Star"

    Labels: ,

    posted by joseph kyle @ 12:11 PM  
    Post a Comment
    << Home
    Previous Postings
    Vintage Interviews
  • Ad Astra Per Apsera
  • Adem
  • Annuals
  • Bobby Bare, Jr
  • The Blow
  • Boduf Songs
  • Brothers & Sisters
  • Paul Burch
  • Allen Clapp
  • Angela Desveaux
  • The Draft
  • Evangelicals
  • Feathers
  • Grand Mal
  • Neil Hamburger
  • Headlights
  • His Name is Alive
  • Keris Howard
  • Graham Lindsey
  • Hans-Peter Lindstrøm
  • The Little Ones
  • Lucero
  • The Matches
  • Mahogany
  • Prophet Omega
  • Alec K. Redfearn
  • Relay
  • Dani Siciliano
  • Sprites
  • Tobin Sprout
  • Tacks, the Boy Disaster
  • Viva Voce
  • Westbound Train
  • What Made Milwaukee Famous
  • The World/Inferno Friendship Society
  • Blog Ethically!
    All songs appearing here are done so either with permission or for sampling purposes only. Files appear here for a limited time only, so act fast! If you possess the copyright to anything posted here and wish to have it removed, please let us know and we shall do so. We're not wanting to cause problems, friends.
    Template by

    Free Blogger Templates