Ty Segall, Axis:Sova, Running Agenda All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Member Picks Recommended Soundboard Image

When: Sat., Aug. 31, 7 p.m. 2013

If someone had told me three years ago that the tirelessly prolific Ty Segall would release a mostly acoustic solo record in 2013, I probably would’ve yawned. I used to think of the guy as just a clever garage rocker, but now I know better. His new Sleeper (Drag City) is a knockout, a homemade collection of midtempo bummers that I can’t get out of my head. His previous solo albums for Drag City—2011’s Goodbye Bread and last year’s Twins—are beautifully twisted bedroom records, where relatively restrained and contemplative songs increasingly outnumber the in-the-red blasts. On many of Sleeper’s tracks Segall seems to channel the melancholic spirit of John Lennon, with moody melodies and a vulnerable falsetto that’s often gilded with simpatico harmony vocals. On “She Don’t Care,” K. Dylan layers grainy violin and viola, creating a rich sound that beautifully balances the austerity of most of the rest of the album. Strummed acoustic guitar provides the main support for Segall’s singing, though some tunes feature primitive drumming or add tension with electric guitar stubbornly peeking through (aside from the violin and viola, he played everything). Segall, who recently moved from San Francisco back to his native Los Angeles, is restless in the best way—he’ll return to Chicago in October in support of the debut by his new trio, Fuzz. Switching so frequently between styles and groups seems to keep his music not only fresh but also constantly improving. Right now I’d be happy if Segall made a new record every week. —Peter Margasak Axis: Sova and Running open.

Price: $20, $18 in advance

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