It’s not uncommon when seeing a solo artist's name to think of bedroom recorded acoustics and hushed voices contemplating the deeper things in life. Ty Segall’s previous album Sleeper was one of this mold, but new offering Manipulator has the California musician bringing a bigger and bolder sound to the studio. However this is no regular solo artist sound, we’re talking full on fuzz guitars and wailing solos that Bill and Ted would be proud of.
Segall still balances the album out well with some pop and string accompanied ballads, but highlight ‘Feel’ is such a fantastic and furious song that it almost defines the album as a whole. Drive down the road blasting this track and you’ll be instantly warped back to a long haired laden 70’s keg party. But while he may have permanently borrowed his uncle’s Big Muff pedal, the 60s-esque tunes still have a modern studio sheen to remind you of the year you live in.
With this being his seventh solo album to be released since 2008, Segall could rival Ryan Adams for being ridiculously prolific. But while 17 tracks on an hour long album sounds very generous, he could have perhaps trimmed things a little for modern attention spans. For all that, Manipulator is currently of the most riff rockin’ releases of the year, arresting, fun and making you look forward to the album he records next week.
Manipulator is out in New Zealand on 22nd August via Spunk, but you can head over to NPR for a First Listen.