Tag Archives: Sam Phillips

New Mountain Goats: As Many Candles As Possible

Video: the Mountain Goats – “As Many Candles As Possible”

the Mountain Goats - As Many Candles As Possible (Official Lyric Video)

Directed by Lalitree Darnielle. From Getting Into Knives, due October 23 on Merge.

Remember back when the Mountains Goats announced Songs for Pierre Chuvin how John Darnielle causally mentioned that “the entire band was decamped at an undisclosed location working on the next Mountain Goats album” when the pandemic started raging out of control and “the work schedule [they] had planned for spring probably wouldn’t be panning out”?

Well, they apparently got enough done in those first few days of March to make a whole album out of it. And that undisclosed location? Sam Phillips Recording studio in Memphis, Tennessee. So that’s pretty cool.

“As Many Candles As Possible” is the first single from the project and it’s a good one. I’ve been getting a little discouraged but the lack of guitars and abundance of what I half-jokingly call “jazziness” on recent Mountain Goats studio stuff, but this sounds like a badass rock and roll song with some gnarly lead guitar. It also features howling Hammond B-3 courtesy of Charles Hodges, the legendary Memphis organist who played on all the Hi Records hits recorded at Willie Mitchell’s Royal Studios.

So yeah, the Mountain Goats are digging into that deep Memphis soil, from the earliest days of rock and roll, through the funky soul of the sixties, all the way to the garage stomp of the Cramps, and beyond.

Seek out a cave by the ocean while you wait out the rain
Dial down the weak bits and crank up the gain.

Yeah!

The Mountain Goats: web, twitter, bandcamp, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Sam Phillips Dead

Sam PhillipsThe most important figure in the second half of the twentieth century, the architect of rock and roll, Sam Phillips, died last night at the age of 80.

Pick up any of the Sun Records compilations to hear his unbelievable influence on r&b, rockabilly, and rock and roll. It is impossible to overrate the impact he had.

My favorite Sam Phillips story is the one right before the recording of “Great Balls of Fire” where Jerry Lee Lewis—influenced by his cousin Jimmy Swaggart, no doubt, who referred to rock and roll as “the new pornography”—was feeling bad about playing “the Devil’s music.” Here’s the conversation, as transcribed by Robert Gordon in It Came from Memphis:

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