Monday, 08 September 2008
Never a particularly prolific artist, Jason Pierce was, after 15 years and four full-length studio albums, nonetheless, burned out. Having completed a critically acclaimed exploration of gospel, blues and roots rock variants with 2003’s Amazing Grace, by the summer of 2005 nothing was sounding right. In an attempt to get outside of his songwriting persona, he was writing a series of songs based on character-driven vignettes, but nothing was adding up to an album – just a bunch of disparate pieces. To make matters far worse, just as he was getting ready to pull the plug on the album, he nearly died himself, ending up in the hospital with pneumonia that left him weak and skeletal and with little ambition to make music. But only then did he see the connecting thread for the album -- death.
Having never shied away ...