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Honey Locust Honky Tonk

4.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 9, 2013
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Editorial Reviews

Honey Locust Honky Tonk is a compact wonder and so varied, tuneful, graceful, magnificent and ebullient that one will be forgiven for thinking that Robert Pollard has saved his best for his own album. Slicker in some ways than recent Guided By Voices efforts, though not without its own down-home charm, its 17 songs whiz by in 34 minutes, stridently showcasing Pollard s songwriting mastery with some of the best tunes he s ever penned. The longest, the semi-stately album closer Airs, clocks in at just over three and a half minutes, but most are in the two- or two-and-half-minute range typical of Pollard s attenuating genius. I m not afraid to be immature, to make a fool of myself, he recently offered as a reason why he s been able to continue writing music at such a high level for so long. I m not afraid to look insane. The only thing crazy about a song like It Disappears in the Least Likely Hands (We May Never Not Know) is its slightly loopy title. The song itself, a chugging Heroes-era Bowie anthem whose entire lyrics are contained in the title, is a marvel of both concision and affect, featuring the full force and range of Pollard s voice, which has never sounded better. For any other guy whose reunited band just finished putting out four full albums and an EP in 18 months, the release of yet still again another solo album might seem excessive, to say the least, but Honey Locust Honky Tonk sees Pollard in top songwriting form. For example, the four-song run that begins with Suit Minus the Middle and concludes with She Hides in Black not only includes object lessons in Pollard s life-long obsession with what he calls the four Ps: pop, punk, psych and prog, but longtime fans will also be rewarded with a reference to a beloved character from early solo effort Kid Marine. In truth, Pollard never holds anything back, and always seems uncannily able to pull any number of music tricks from his magic sleeve. He s done it again, folks. Honey Locust Honky Tonk is as sweet and as sharp as anything Pollard and friends has ever produced. Bite it and see.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 9, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Guided By Voices
  • ASIN: B00D39UQ68
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #228,266 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Vinyl
this is one of 2013's best, and i had to chime in after only seeing one (lackluster) review of it on here. i would wager this album is as good as any of the reunited GBV albums, if not better at times in its unified flow and focus. this is Pollard's best solo album since 'Normal Happiness' (2006) and can stand on its own with just about any of his solo work. it has an energized urgency to it that bears a fruitful rush of repeated listens, sprightly ear worms galore and a healthy leg kick or three thrown in for good measure. as a fan of most everything he's been doing since first hearing Bee Thousand in '94 i can say this is a collection of songs I'll still enjoy rocking to some years down the road.
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Format: Audio CD
These are allegedly the tunes that he had written for the next Guided By Voices record. It would have been infinitely better as a GBV record. The songs are above average considering his lackluster solo output since prior to the (thank god) GBV reunion. The problem is, and this is the trouble with all of his post GBV solo output (minus From A Compound Eye): it sounds sterile and forced. What sounds like some good songs get buried in a glossy, passive, production mire. Go and get the new GBV album "English Little League" first instead. It's much better. He needs to keep that band.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
There are less skipable songs on this Pollard solo offering since Jack Sells the Cow...everything flows together seamlessly and the slow, anthemic, hook-heavy songs are in full bloom on this one. Not nearly as dischordant and obscure as Blazing Gentlemen, which might grow on me after a while, but this one sounded great from the first listen.
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Format: Audio CD
Most famously known as the man behind Ohio’s legendary Guided By Voices, Pollard uses his unique voice & spectacular songwriting skills to create yet another set of off-the-cuff, lo-fi psychedelic pop that shines in the brilliance of its hook-laden melodies. This is the 24th release from an amazingly prolific songwriter/musician who has also been in Boston Spaceships, Keene
Brothers, Airport 5, and a number of other projects. Recalls artists such as Robyn Hitchcock, the Beatles, Pavement, Neutral Milk Hotel, Sebadoh.
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