by Jeff Milo
Ian Pinchback's "Surreal Estate" (Dead Letter Office)
Friday - August 2nd at PJs Lager House
Doors at 9:00pm
There's the rich crackle of his acoustic guitar under a drearily elegant violin's drawl; there's the tastefully kicked drums providing just enough rhythm for those electric guitars to whip in some sunlight; there's that harmonica - always happily welcomed into a folk aesthetic... But really, it's Pinchback's voice that cleaves through it all, raspy and warbling; as tough as bark, as crinkled as a mud-flecked leaf in the wind. That same subdued beauty found, perhaps either in the throes of Autumn's graying-orange bluster or stoked amid the fading humid haze of a late summer's midnight bonfire, eerie and alluring all at once, foreboding yet fragile - that's like the voice of Ian Pinchback.
And with lyrics like this...
"...stare at my thin broken frame...and no one remembers my name / my headstone hangs heavy with venomous vines, next to a bottomless pond - my spirit will travel to the edges of time and rest in the outworld's beyond - transmitted from the black star to the deepest foggy caverns..."
...It may just give you a shiver reading them back without the music under it; like you're about to step into the Black Lodge for a spooky summit in the wee hours of the morning at the borders of Twin Peaks or "Halloween Town"... meeting up with Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Jim White, Bill Callahan and maybe another local like Chris Bathgate... Pinchback would round out that poker-table quite nicely.