Photo by Kyle Thomas
Okay, so maybe the whole world didn’t come together and thank the resident garage rock God for dropping a new tune. In fact, I think it was an equal split between guffaws with jaws dropping and “Who?” with a side of “Meh.” For those not in the latter camp, this is indeed good news.
“Alta” is a track Segall and his Freedom Band, which includes Emmett Kelly (guitar, vocals), Mikal Cronin (bass, vocals), Charles Moothart (drums) and Ben Boye (keyboards), have been playing live over the last year of shows and finally committed to tape back in the spring with Steve Albini at his Electrical Audio studio in Chicago. According to Drag City, here’s what the track is about:
It’s a nature jam as well – basically a “fuck-the-last-500-years” jam, which shows just how far back Ty‘s willing to go to get really back to nature. It’s a love song to the natural state of hometown grounds – and to convey the feelings, a wistful electric piano lick is ridden out on some crazy guitar horses and Ty’s heartstruck vocal.
The electric piano does add a bit of whimsy to the usual Segall crunch, and this song does indeed crunch. After that initial intro the band kicks in like a caffeine drip mainlined into a vein and they swing and sway like Crazy Horse in their prime. If you’re familiar with the Ty Segall formula, this song will feel like putting on that old, scruffy sweater you love so much on the first chilly fall day. Warm and fuzzies.
I’m slowly coming around to Segall. I never thought much of the lad in the early days, but in 2014 after hearing an interview he did with Marc Maron I had a change of heart. I bought Manipulator and things changed from there. Twins was next and that blew my mind. I may not fall for everything, but I’m definitely in the Segall camp now. “Alta” is a reminder why that is.