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Ty Segall – Manipulator

  • Published in Albums

One of the most prolific men in indie music right now is back with yet another album, Manipulator is Ty Segall’s fifteenth in a relatively short space of time. From the off, title track ‘Manipulator’ sets out his full intention for the album, chirpy melodies open up before Ty’s distinctive vocals kick in. The guitars get heavier and fuzzier throughout the track and chants of “Manipulator” add to the swirling track.

The album moves quickly before a slow jam in the form of ‘The Singer’ sharp stabs of guitar accompany Ty’s vocals. As the track continues despite its slower tempo it gets increasingly louder as the layers of instrumentation increase and the atmosphere created builds as it reaches its crescendo. 

Quickly though he’s picking the pace up again with ‘It’s Over’ the duelling guitars on this track sound unbelievably fierce. It’s almost like a duel to the death, this is Ty Segall at his best and we’re barely into the album. Chanting, “It’s Over” repeatedly as the track comes to a close as it ends in a sonic battle of guitar power.

Manipulator is packed full of super sonic guitars and its almost hard to believe how sonically brilliant this album is from the off and throughout. ‘Feel’ is truly unreal how many guitars are packed into such a small space, dense layers of squealing guitars played at breakneck speed. 

New single ‘The Faker’ is a little toned down but it allows us to focus a little more on the lyrics, Ty Segall writes some great lyrics. They’re perhaps not the deepest but he writes some great hooks and ‘The Faker’ is no different as he snarls, “ask your boss man for a raise!”

There’s a relentless pace to the album, if its not an electric guitar he’s picked up an acoustic. ‘Green Belly’ is another excellent song maintaining the tempo just this time utilising an acoustic guitar, allowing us to really focus on his lyrical genius instead of his phenomenal guitar playing.

 ‘The Hand’ has an almost classic rock feel to it, its opening wouldn’t be out of place on a Bon Jovi track, which to some may set off alarm bells but this is Ty Segall. He quickly gets into his stride as he croons his way through something that turns into psychedelic jam, as it swirls into something very different as the track continues.

As the album draws to its close there’s still time for a couple more raucous outings and arguably the heaviest of these is ‘The Crawler’. From the off there are dense layers of guitars all over the track, the intensity of the track draws you in as Ty chants “I am the crawler.” 

‘ The Feels’ has a much heavier feel to it, the riffs are harder the whole feel of the track is a lot darker. As a lone guitar squeals over the top Ty’s high-pitched vocals drift along the top line, yet another masterful tune on what is a truly phenomenal album.

Manipulator is arguably Ty Segalls best album to date, he may be prolific but in our eyes hes yet to release anything that’s been below par. He is always improving and we can’t wait to see what he has up his sleeve for his next album and we’re sure it won’t be long before we get to hear it.

Manipulator is released on August 25 and available from amazon & iTunes.


Wand - Ganglion Reef

  • Published in Albums

Christ it's difficult. Each new garage(ish) band you hear sounds better than the next as you make your way through the bigger list of influences they manage to cram in to their ever better songs.

Take Wand, for example. By the time you get to 'Clearer' on their debut Ganglion Reef it's well nigh impossible to have enough map pins available to mark out where all the good stuff comes from. And that's only the second song on this monster!

This'll make you dance and then some. And if it doesn't then why are you bothering to read this? 'Fire On The Mountain (I-II-III)' is maybe too pop for some people but with a title like that you really just need to scream "FRAMPTON!" and get involved heart and soul. Trust me, it gets weird too. And then there's that immense solo. And the strings ...

It could actually all stop there and you'd be happy enough, once you'd woken up from the induced coma you had to be er, induced into. But no - there's more to come.

One of the best albums of the year? Aye, for sure.

I can't be bothered drawing comparisons between these guys and their contemporaries. They sound a bit like some other bands of now (but better) who, like them, sound like a bunch of great and in some cases not so great, apart from that one song, bands from 50 (yes folks the 1960s are that far away in time) years ago.

When they want to be rockers they rock, when they want to be subtle they manage it and there's always a good crossover of the two. 'Growing Up Boys' amply showcases their ability to manage Bowie-esque space magnificence too.

Why are they not on the bill at the Liverpool Psychfest next month you may well ask? They're supporting Ty Segall on tour in the USA is why so what better endorsement do you need before going out and buying this fantastic album? Don't take my (wine fulled) word for it - agree with Mr. Segall and support these guys.

Ganglion Reef is released on August 25 and available on vinyl from amazon and as a download from iTunes.

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