Will my pony recognize my voice in hell?
Will he still be blind, or do they go by smell?
Will you promise not to rest me out at sea
But on a fiery river boat that's rickety?
In the late 90s, Mark Linkous had a near-death experience in London when he took too many pills and ended up in a coma. He ultimately survived and the artistic result of that was one of my favorite albums of all time, 1998’s Good Morning Spider. It’s truly incredible to listen to because it sounds and feels like something that was made from a hospital bed, with the morphine drip on.
In 2003, he followed Spider up with It’s a Wonderful Life, something equally spooky, but also equally fantastic. Linkous’ skill as a producer alone is something to marvel at, as the sound -- the overall feeling and level of intimacy -- he gets out of his songs is hard to find anywhere else.
“More Yellow Birds” is vintage Sparklehorse – a half-sedated glimpse of the sun shining through the late autumn trees with a slight chill in the air. Contemplative, unique, sad and absolutely beautiful.