A word on naming your songs: Generally speaking, a song title like “Off The Wall” (or “Thriller,” for that matter) should be way off-limits for those releasing their first proper “singer-songwriter” album. And generally speaking, those releasing their first proper “singer-songwriter” aren’t building off of the Immaculate Credential of a career playing in Sonic Youth! So, dear alt.god Ranaldo, there is space in this world for your “Off The Wall,” and a beautiful original called “Like A Rolling Stone” too, if you have one in you. Whatever! Moving forward, if we can distill this into some sort of a formula, it’s probably go something like this: When you live in a world where awesome bands name themselves after your tracks, your own tracks can be called whatever the hell they want.
So, “Off The Wall” by Lee Ranaldo. It’s the first single from Between The Time And The Tides, Ranaldo’s forthcoming LP on Matador. It has some SY tie-ins (longtime Sonic producer John Agnello and drummer Steve Shelley are on board), Nels Cline on lead guitar, and acid jazz/jam titan John Medeski, presumably on Wurlitzer/good vibes. “Off The Wall” is about a “rainbow “falling to the floor” and says “take me as I am, take my hand.” Thusly, it breathes with the sanguine rollick of late ’80s guitar indie (or, with the sanguine rollick that comes with having made making guitar indie in the late ’80s). Or maybe that is largely the Nels Cline factor. In any event, it is also a free MP3 — so begin your sampling here:
Lee Ranaldo – “Off The Wall”
Between The Time And The Tides is out 3/20 via Matador, where you can pre-order it.