.

Mike Gordon's Reggae-Steeped 'Yarmouth Road' - Song Premiere

First played on Phish's summer tour

Mike Gordon
Julia Mordaunt © 2014 Mike Gordon. All Rights Reserved.
January 14, 2014 9:00 AM ET

Before Phish kicked off last summer's tour, Mike Gordon was unsure about introducing some of his new songs onstage. "They weren't even finished yet," says the bassist. But he was relieved in Saratoga Springs, New York, when the band nailed "Yarmouth Road," his endearing, reggae-steeped groove about an emotional rift. "I'm glad I did," he adds. "Phish has been having a lot of fun with them."

The New Immortals: Phish, Arcade Fire, Kanye West and More

"Yarmouth Road," will be released on Gordon's fourth solo album, Overstep, due February 25th. Gordon wrote the LP on weekend retreats throughout New England with his longtime collaborator, guitarist Scott Murawski, who also plays in Max Creek. The duo visited towns including Lake Sunapee, New Hampshire, where they wrote on a boat, and North Adams, Massachusetts, where they spent a day at the MASS MoCA museum writing poems based on paintings. On each trip, they brought along lots of experimental equipment. "We had a toy drumset, little pocket gizmos, backpacking guitars," says Gordon.

The duo interviewed several producers before hitting the studio with producer Paul Q. Kolderie (Radiohead, the Pixies, Warren Zevon). "We wanted to find someone that would appreciate what was kind of quirky about it but also what was trying to be a little more fun-oriented than I had been in the past," says Gordon. "It's not an album of long jams or anything like that. I like to be kind of song-y on albums and let certain things extend."

"Yarmouth Road" was completed in South Boston, inspired by a walk through a building owned by Gordon's uncle – an old oil distillery-turned-artists' building featuring honeycomb-shaped ceiling sculptures. The final piece of the song was incorporating the "Banshee" pedal, a modern version of the talk box popularized by Peter Frampton. "It just pushed it over the edge," says Gordon.

Gordon will play the new material on a tour  – with a band including Murawski (guitar), Craig Myers (percussion), Tom Cleary (keyboards) and Todd Isler (drums) – kicking off February 28th at Syracuse, New York's Wescott Theatre and wrapping April 6th at Burlington, Vermont's Higher Ground.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com