in which i chat with only son and fall under magic’s spell

so, like most of you, i fell in love with the song anyone else but you by the moldy peaches after the movie juno came out. it was one of those songs that i grew to adore despite the hype (oh, let’s not even go into what hype vs. liking a song means at this moment), but more importantly, it got me interested in the moldy peaches.

the peaches are currently on hiatus, but that doesn’t mean the band members haven’t been busy creating new music for us to enjoy. their lead guitarist, jack dishel, has formed a new band, only son, and is on the verge of releasing his sophomore release, searchlight, in mid-january. the lead single off of searchlight, magic, is a great song – it’s got a beatles-esque quality, along with rising and falling bookends to lyric stanzas. speaking of the lyrics – i love them. magic – not the harry potter kind, but the harry houdini kind – is used as a metaphor to talk about falling in love, and really, isn’t that a perfect way to describe it? love does feel like magic: difficult to understand, difficult to master and, really – sometimes it’s better that way. i’m looking forward to hearing the rest of the songs off searchlight, if magic is any indication of quality.

jack dishel, the man behind only son, was kind enough to answer a few questions for me about his upcoming album:

have you met heather: many artists tend to get pigeonholed into specific genres of music, yet you’ve been in two previous bands (stipplicon and the moldy peaches) that have allowed you to explore different styles. What kind of influences do you find help mold only son’s musical style?

jack dishel: I’m influenced by pretty much anything and everything around me. I don’t feel an allegiance to any style or point of view – I just start making things and they come out sounding a certain way. Since it’s all being filtered through me anyway I think there’s a natural thread between it all. You can pigeon-hole just about anything, though; even saying “You never know what to expect from him!” puts a person in a category. But that’s a pretty good one to be in if you have to be in one…

hymh: What can listeners expect from searchlight, which will be released in January 2011?

jack: Searchlight is sort of like a late Beatles album – where the songs are all in their own world but not their own universe. There are a few rocking ones, some ballads and a bunch that I don’t really know how to describe. When I listen to it they sound like they make sense next to each other even though they’re different. Kind of like a long conversation at a party where the subject changes, people’s voices get louder, they get pissed off about something, then they laugh, then it’s quiet for a second, then they remember something and change the subject again, etc. Hopefully the album is a person you’d want to run into at a party and not a close talker with bad breath confiding in you for an hour about something you don’t want to know while the girl you want to talk to is sitting by herself waiting for you.

hymh: i’ve read that you’ve been obsessed with music from an early age. do you find that being a music fan helps you be a better musician? i ask this because i’m often amused by actors who always say, “i don’t have time to watch TV or go to the movies,” as it seems counter-productive with their craft. it’s the same with writers who refuse to read outside their genres. what types of music are you currently into?

jack: I don’t know any musician who isn’t a pretty major music fan. Even so, I’m really bad about staying up to date on what’s going on moment to moment in the music world. I feel like now there are so many good bands that I hear day to day that sometimes I don’t even stop to ask what it is because I’ll just hear something else that’s interesting in an hour. If everyone was like me people would all have a generally good feeling about what’s going on with no specifics to back it up. And all musicians would be broke. Anyway, The Strokes are still my favorite band and I can’t wait for their new album! Most of the time though I find myself connecting to older music I never heard before. Yesterday I listened to “I Started A Joke” by The Bee Gees about 15 times in a row.

thanks, jack!

a man after my own heart. gotta love the people who admit to hitting repeat over and over (to which i am grossly guilty of on a daily basis). have a listen to magic, which i have a feeling you’ll want to listen to more than once:

it’s magic ’til we know how it works
nobody wants to see how you do it
the secret is all that you’re worth
so they smile and clap right through it

it took so many years to plan
and just a second to do
to open my hand
and show everything to you

it’s magic when you know how it works
’cause even if you find the location
you know all the numbers and words
but you’ll never guess the combination

it takes so long to understand
and just a second to choose
and if you figure out which hand
i’ll give everything to you

don’t show me how we do it

(mp3) magic by only son

here’s the video:

look for only son’s searchlight to be released in indie records stores and online on january 18, 2011.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *