Jherek Bischoff’s solo album Composed (which we called “immaculately arranged orchestral pop”) was recorded by layering and cutting together single musicians recorded in their living rooms, over his own previously recorded parts. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, however, Bischoff was able to organize a concert at New York’s Merkin Hall with a full backing orchestra.
Culminating two years of work on a five-EP cycle, the final installment of Parenthetical Girls’ Privilege series is here and full of dynamic pop beauty and angst.
Drawing back from the orchestral expanse of 2008 LP Entanglements, the core duo of vocalist / creative director Zac Pennington and producer/arranger Jherek Bischoff (whose solo album you must hear) offers dreamy electro- and 1960s pop, psychedelic rock, an organ dirge, and a touch of chamber elegance on Portrait of a Reputation. Watch here as the “Curtains” are closed on Pennington for a viking sea funeral.
David Byrne has one of the most recognizable voices in music, ranking somewhere between Bob Dylan and Michael Stipe. No doubt this is why everyone wants the former Talking Heads front-man to guest on their records. Dirty Projectors, Arcade Fire, Jherek Bischoff — they’ve all taken advantage of the static friction of that back-of-the-mouth tenor.
But Love This Giant, Byrne’s collaboration with St. Vincent, a woman who’s known more for her multi-instrumentalist abilities than her voice, is the first full-length he’s co-written with anyone other than Brian Eno.
“Young and Lovely” f. Zac Pennington & Soko[audio:http://alarm-magazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Jherek_Bischoff_Young__Lovely.mp3|titles=Jherek Bischoff: “Young & Lovely”]
Jherek Bischoff has more than a few tricks up his very well-tailored sleeves. You know it just by looking at him, at his satin-collared tuxedo and manicured hairdo circa 1939, at his high cheek bones and golden-brown eyes, the color of failing light refracted off coated steel. Bischoff is maybe a renaissance man, maybe one of many. He’s not the only musician whose pedigree includes both experimental ensembles like Xiu Xiu and more classically oriented groups like Wordless Music.
Get ready to hear the name Jherek Bischoff a lot more often. The multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer, and ex-Parenthetical Girls member has crafted an epic orch-pop debut called Composed, which is coming via Brassland on June 5.
And if you need a few familiar names to get you interested, the album features David Byrne, Nels Cline (Wilco, Nels Cline Singers), Craig Wedren (Shudder to Think), Greg Saunier (Deerhoof), Zac Pennington (Parenthetical Girls), Soko, Carla Bozulich, Dawn McCarthy (Faun Fables), and even more notables.