10 Songs, 51 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

As guitarist with the Church, Marty Willson-Piper became an icon of Australian rock during the ‘80s and his fascination with late ‘60s-style folk and progressive-rock has been a reoccurring theme in his work. The same elements can be found once again in 2009’s Nightjar in somewhat reconfigured form. Willson-Piper has matured as an artist over the years; you can hear a grown-up yearning in “The Love You Never Had” and “I Must Have Fallen,” as well as an awakened sense of political outrage in “Song for Victor Jara.” The fractured observations in “More Is Less” and “Feed Your Mind” have an elusive Dylanish sort of wit. As on past albums, Willson-Piper emphasizes textured sonic atmospheres, suggesting the softer side of early Pink Floyd at times. “No One There” billows with gauzy guitar lines, while “A Game for Losers” waltzes along to a melancholy accordion. Brightly chiming folk-rockers like “Lullaby For the Lonely” and “High Down Below” display a tighter grasp on songwriting form. Nightjar contains enough good stuff to commend it to devotees of post-psychedelic pop.

EDITORS’ NOTES

As guitarist with the Church, Marty Willson-Piper became an icon of Australian rock during the ‘80s and his fascination with late ‘60s-style folk and progressive-rock has been a reoccurring theme in his work. The same elements can be found once again in 2009’s Nightjar in somewhat reconfigured form. Willson-Piper has matured as an artist over the years; you can hear a grown-up yearning in “The Love You Never Had” and “I Must Have Fallen,” as well as an awakened sense of political outrage in “Song for Victor Jara.” The fractured observations in “More Is Less” and “Feed Your Mind” have an elusive Dylanish sort of wit. As on past albums, Willson-Piper emphasizes textured sonic atmospheres, suggesting the softer side of early Pink Floyd at times. “No One There” billows with gauzy guitar lines, while “A Game for Losers” waltzes along to a melancholy accordion. Brightly chiming folk-rockers like “Lullaby For the Lonely” and “High Down Below” display a tighter grasp on songwriting form. Nightjar contains enough good stuff to commend it to devotees of post-psychedelic pop.

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About Marty Willson-Piper

The guitarist and songwriter for the Church, Marty Willson-Piper has recorded several solo albums, some of which have been released in America. Art Attack (1988), his first, includes six tracks from the Australian-only In Reflection. Rhyme (1989) and Spirit Level (1992) have also appeared on Rykodisc. Willson-Piper spent the remainder of the decade focusing on his Church duties before returning to solo recording with 2000's Hanging Out in Heaven. A blue-ribbon collaborator, Willson-Piper also moonlighted in a number of notable bands (including Cinerama, All About Eve, and the Saints), as well as working alongside artists as diverse as Tom Verlaine and Aimee Mann. His Noctorum side project (with longtime friend Andy "Dare" Mason) spawned two releases in the mid- to late 2000s and an appearance on a Dusty Springfield tribute album. Three live recordings also saw the light in the 2000s, with sets documented at the Knitting Factory, Fine Line Cafe, and Other Side. By 2008, Willson-Piper had another album's worth of solo material ready for the studio, and he released his sixth solo effort, Nightjar, in 2009. ~ John Bush & J. Scott McClintock

Top Songs by Marty Willson-Piper

Top Albums by Marty Willson-Piper

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