Chuck Prophet – Night Surfing – A Review

Read our review of the new Chuck Prophet album ‘Night Surfer’

 

prophetnightsurfer

 

Chuck Prophet’s New Album

Night Surfer

 

By Rob Dickens

I wrote a while back how much I love Chuck Prophet’s work.

A key figure in the influential 1980’s indie band Green and Red, a string of compelling solo records since 1990, a side man and session musician to many esteemed artists and a man with insights into human behaviour and a damn fine sense of humour.  If you want to get a taste of the humour, just get on his email list or read anything under the “Dotted Line” here.

Prophet’s new album Night Surfer (Yep Roc Records) is now available.  How does it stack up against his past solo efforts?  Very well, if you ask me.

Night Surfer was recorded in Prophet’s home town of San Francisco at Decibelle Recording Studio and in Nashville at Alex the Great with noted producer Brad Jones.  Of the album, Prophet comments, “This record is loosely conceptual but universal all the same. It’s all about a path forward, about looking around and imagining where we’ll be in 20 years if we just follow that path. And of course, you’ll find a persistent anxiety throughout; we live, after all, in anxious times. As John Murry told me after a first listen, ‘It brings a tear to the eye and blood to the johnson.’”  So yeah, a new record, new sound.  It’s got it’s own groove with in your face guitars that snake and harmonize.  They jangle too, thanks in no small part to special guest Peter Buck.”

Some Words From Me:

Twelve songs.  Prophet capturing a sweet balance between that distinct and expressive voice, an authentic rock sensitivity and unique, hard-to-ignore lyrics.  From the Rolling Stones-esque “Countrified Inner City Technological Man”, the wonderful chorus of “Wish Me Luck” (My life is an experiment…That doesn’t prove a thing), to the tender acoustic “They Don’t Know About Me and You” and “If I Was A Baby”, there’s not a misstep to be found.  Then there’s the fuzzy boogie of “Felony Glamour”.  And what about the rich and profound “Truth Will Out (Ballad Of Melissa and Remy)”?  In the end we are left with hope and joy with frantic drums and steady hand claps as Chuck opines “Love Is The Only Thing”.

Thanks Chuck for giving us some more joy and for lines like ‘I slept besides a Catholic priest one time in Henry Rollins’ Band”.

Night Surfer is another star entry is a terrific career.

 

Some Words From Chuck:

A new record. NIGHT SURFER.  There are a lot of little stories on Night Surfer.  But they seem to add up to one big story.  What that story is, I am not really sure, but I’ll know it when it punches me in the face.  We’ve got some dark scenarios, but where there’s music, there’s hope, right?  Anyway, it’s definitely a guitar album, with layers.  Strings and horns and those prog guitars that border on straight-up arena rock.  Vocals with that hard-earned phlegm I’ve never been able to get to stick to tape before.

Twelve songs: some set after a big disaster….Love Amidst the Ruins?  It’s Diamond Dogs via Mad Max…. It’s life in Startup City run amok.  It’s about the landlord licking his lips, itching to sell the place out from under us and people laying down in front of google buses with their bodies.  All that plus my first cover since Queen Bee. .. and some special guests like the hook machine himself: ¡Peter Buck!  Night Surfer is all about a path forward, about looking around and imagining where we’ll be in 20 years if we just follow that path.  And while I had originally considered all this leaning toward the dystopian, now I wonder.  The future might just save us.  But we have to get there first.

 

Via Planet Company

 

Read our review of the new Chuck Prophet album ‘Night Surfer’ 

Read our review of the new Chuck Prophet album ‘Night Surfer’

Read our review of the new Chuck Prophet album ‘Night Surfer’

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Author: Rob Dickens

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