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Transnormal Skiperoo

4.9 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Transnormal Skiperoo is a name I invented to describe a strange new feeling I've been experiencing after years of feeling lost and alone and cursed. Now, when everything around me begins to shine, when I find myself dancing around in my back yard for no particular reason other than it feels good to be alive, when I get this deep sense of gratitude that I don't need drugs or God or doomed romance to fuel myself through the gauntlet of a normal day, I call that feeling 'Transnormal Skiperoo. Jim White


Jim White traveled many a junkyard road to get to Transnormal Skiperoo. Raised in Pensacola, Florida, a town crushed between the church and heroin, Jim s songs reach deep into the underbelly of the South. One time Pentacostal, fashion model, New York taxi driver, drifter, pro-surfer, photographer, film-maker, his music is the conduit for all the stories he collected along the way. His previous albums Wrong-Eyed Jesus [1997], No Such Place [2001] and Drill a Hole in That Substrate... [2004] were acclaimed as masterpieces of outer space alt.country and established Jim as a phenomenal maverick talent. Jim also starred in the BBC4 film Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus , an award-winning road-movie exploring Southern culture through its music and stories. Now living in an old farmhouse in the backwoods of Georgia, Jim White may have finally reached a place called home, but his other search, for what he calls the gold tooth in God s crooked smile continues in this new set of backyard tales. Transnormal Skiperoo was produced by Joe Pernice and Michael Deming, recorded with the band Ollabelle, and also features tracks with Tucker Martine and Laura Veirs, local Georgia legend Don Chambers & Goat, bluegrass duo Jeff & Vida and percussionist Mauro Refosco of Forro In The Dark.

Jim White is a highly original voice in the immense Southern gothic tradition. When broken humanity aches for grace, music like his may give you a shot at redemption.

Review

Strange things appear in Jim White s songs. There are revelations
and tall tales, absurdities and tragedies, Southern roots and
existential disorientation. A man sits on a railroad track howling at
the moon. Jesus returns driving a motor home, alongside Buddha on
a motorcycle and Muhammad in a train. The singer finds himself
handcuffed to a fence in Mississippi, where things is always better
than they seem.
Mr. White grew up in Pensacola, Fla., soaking up the Pentecostal preaching that many of
his songs still react against. He recently made a documentary for the BBC, Searching for
the Wrong-Eyed Jesus, about the rural South, and he now lives in Georgia. The music
on his new album, Transnormal Skiperoo (Luaka Bop), leans mostly toward folksy
country.

While his tunes are down-home, his words are restless and uncertain. Mr. White is entirely his own combination of philosopher and raconteur,
country boy and intellectual. --Jon Pareles, The New York Times, 2/28/08

Pensacola -- a panhandle Gulf town best known for hosting hurricanes, evangelicals, and post-hardcore bands -- is a tough home base for a surreally gothic alt-country crooner with a Gram Parsons bent. But Jim White's Joe Pernice produced fourth record (whose title White claims is shorthand for a sensation of total giddiness and gratitude) deftly melds Southern-flavored soul with California twang. Stompers like "Turquoise House" and "Crash Into the Sun" are unusually buoyant for White, full of backing vocals, Dobro, and electric guitar. Much like his hometown, Transnormal Skiperoo is sunny and dark at the same time. --Amanda Petrusich, Spin Magazine, March 2008
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 4, 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Luaka Bop
  • ASIN: B0012IXBP0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,227 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
A while back, Jim White opened for Ollabelle, his backing band on several tracks on "Skiperoo". After the show, I commented to him that "A town called Amen", the opening track, sounded like Jim White channeling John Prine. Jokingly or not, White said "that's exactly what I was doing on that song". For my money, Jim White does John Prine better than Prine himself.

"Skiperoo" is a new chapter in Jim White's quirky adventures from the south. By his own description, it's a happier chronicle of the goings on in his world than previous albums, but fear not, there's plenty of dark, mysterious and mystical stuff lurking around every corner, just like on his past records.

As you listen to "Skiperoo", you'll soon get the feeling that White has made peace with some of the demons that have haunted him in the past, although on "Jailbird", the first of several gorgeous, contemplative songs, he reflects on the difficulties of leaving one's past behind, a theme that has often emerged on his previous records. As a lonely harmonica trails off at the end, you can just picture the player sitting on a front porch in the Appalachians. The end of the song is so similar to the end of "Sleepy town" from White's debut album "Wrong Eyed Jesus" that you might find yourself listening for that lonesome dog barking in the neighbor's yard down that dirt road, but it's not there this time.

White has a great sense of humor too, and isn't afraid of changing the mood on his albums. The first offbeat, not to mention infectiously addictive party song, is "Crash into the sun". Some say the lyrics are subtly political, but with its trumpets, handclaps, and "woo-hoo" chorus, it sure is a lot of fun, and guaranteed to stick to the neurons in the back of your brain.
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Format: Audio CD
Please see US version of CD. This was a review of the import edition.
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I take the title from an old Percy Sledge song, take time to know her. You cannot appreciate Jim White with just one listen. There are more layers to his music than anyone I can remember, I listen to his music a lot and I always hear something new, a sound, a word, an absurdity or just a different way of seeing the same thing. I first saw Jim White at a concert opening for Lucinda Williams,in Milwaukee, WI, I talked with him a moment and bought a couple of his CDs, which he signed. His music dosen't have a one song hook it is the entire work thats the hook. Again take time to know him.
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This is yet another wonderful CD from Jim. I love all of the songs with Plywood Superman being my favorite. Like all of Jim's songs, this CD takes you to another world through dark hopelessness and than back to the light. As a matter of fact, I think Jim actually wrote a happy song on this CD call Diamonds to Coal. The music and lyrics are top notch and the understated production of this CD vs the Drill a Hole in that Substrate brings this CD back to the roots of Jim earlier Wrong Eye'd Jesus songs.

Keep up the great work Jim, it was great seeing you in Santa Cruz and give us a new CD soon!
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I didn't think Jim could blow me away, once again...but he has. I keep all of his music at my fingertips but I've barely been able to listen to anything else but this since I got it. "Crash into the sun" is an incredible political statement and fabulous party song. "Turquoise House" is also delightful and all of his music speaks to my heart and soul, especially some of his darker songs. THANKS JIM !
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