Greg Ashley - Pictures Of Saint Paul Street
Greg Ashley has been a å_fixture on the underground music scene since the late 90‰۪s while straå_ng eardrums as a teenager in Houston in garagepunk band The Strate-Coats. Since then he‰۪s proven himself not only as a songwriter, singer and guitar player in bands like The Mirrors & The Gris-Gris, but also as a producer / sound engineer. His career as a solo artist is vast & varied, spanning the gamut between fried & beautiful psychedelia, gorgeous & cathartic symphonic suites & gentle, damaged folk music, beginning with 2003‰۪s ‰ÛÏMedicine Fuck Dream‰ & last leaving us with 2014‰۪s ‰ÛÏAnother Generation of Slaves‰. His latest, ‰ÛÏPictures of Saint Paul Street‰ carries forward that album‰۪s musical palette (a rootsy amalgam of tortured, Cohen-esque folk tinged with the beer soaked recklessness of a West Texas honky-tonk). The songs on ‰ÛÏPictures of Saint Paul Street‰ are lush & beautiful autopsies of society‰۪s underbelly, with stark and brutally honest ruminations on humanity. Songs like ‰ÛÏA Sea of Suckers‰ & ‰ÛÏPursue The Nightlife‰ pull no punches, while ‰ÛÏJailbirds & Vagabonds‰ and ‰ÛÏBlues For A Pecan Tree‰ carouse on a more abstract, human (almost romantic) level. By the time you‰۪ve hit the album‰۪s centerpiece; ‰ÛÏBullshit Society‰, Ashley‰۪s songs move from ballads of hopeless misery to rallying anthems for the dispossessed. The people & artists who move further to the fringe as power and greed overtake our planet, a situation all too familiar to Ashley as he was forced to relocate his long-running Creamery Studio from it‰۪s long time home due to the rampant gentriå_cation of the Bay Area. ‰ÛÏPictures of Saint Paul Street‰ isn‰۪t always an easy listen, but that‰۪s the point; the journey to salvation isn‰۪t easy or pretty. The protagonist in many of Ashley‰۪s songs may be Ashley himself - a true artist willing to admit he‰۪s nowhere near perfect, and honest enough to document his sunrises & sunsets.
Limited, clear vinyl is available for Cargo Collective stores only.
RIYL: Kurt Vile, Lee Hazlewood, Leonard Cohen, Circuit des Yeux, Nick Cave, Bill Fay, Scott Walker.