November 4 — “421” by Illogical Time Concerns

artwork for Asleep In The Collapse

If you only listen to one song tonight, make it “421” by Illogical Time Concerns (2012, from the album Asleep In The Collapse).

Tonight, we take another look in the trusty This is That Song mailbag. We get a lot of stuff from all over the globe. The bag has provided some very pleasant surprises, a few disappointments, a few head-scratchers. It’s a daily adventure, dipping into the mailbag. We’ve had really good luck with stuff from the Golden State, and when we see something with a “San Francisco” postmark, we know that there’s a pretty good chance that we’re gonna like it, and that’s the deal with tonight’s song. We’re still not sure what’s going on with that exploding scene, but we’re guessing that it’s the water.

Illogical Time Concerns is a DIY space-rock/dreamgaze band from San Francisco. It’s probably inaccurate to call Illogical Time Concerns a “band”. It’s really not much more than the bedroom tapes and the recording project of John Ricksen. Under the Illogical Time Concerns name, he’s been releasing two albums a year every year since 2004. It started off as a parallel side project from his band Collider, and the two projects often intertwine. Actually, Ricksen says that ITC existed before Collider did, and that he used an early ITC song to recruit band members for Collider. In that band, everyone had equal amounts of creative control, and he needed to have a way to make some songs that were “his”, separate from the Collider songs.

Although Illogical Time Concerns is a solo recording project, Ricksen frequently gets contribution from his brother Mark and their friend Billy Boyle. Those two guys were also in Collider. Confused yet? Just wait. A lot of the ITC songs, including tonight’s song and the rest the songs on Asleep In The Collapse were actually written to be Collider songs. They were, for one reason or another, left off of the four Collider releases.

Asleep In The Collapse is the second of the 2012 releases, after Sea Ex was released in the spring. That album, and the whole ITC catalog, is available as a free download from Bandcamp here. I like the whole record, and I especially like tonight’s song:

Ricksen names Broken Social Scene among his major influences, and it’s pretty easy to hear that influence on this song. This is quite a bit noisier than most BSS songs, but I definitely can hear a resemblance. The heavy metal break at 1:30 is a little strange, but apart from that, I totally get the list of bands that he says are influences: Brian Eno, Neil Young, Joy Division, The Velvet Underground, Brian Jonestown Massacre, Pavement, My Bloody Valentine, Sigur Ros, Radiohead. He doesn’t list these guys, but I hear a little bit of Boyracer in this song. Specifically when the song breaks down for the long coda at 2:52.

I like how noisy this is, and I like that it’s that way right from the drop. No need to waste time.

421, in case you’re wondering isn’t an area code in the United States. It probably doesn’t refer to US Highway 421, which runs from the coast of North Carolina to the coast of Lake Michigan. It probably doesn’t refer to the international calling country code for Slovakia. It might refer to the running time of the song (which is actually 4:22). I can’t discern the lyrics, and I didn’t ask what the song is about.

Ricksen has always made ITC’s music available for free, and he always wants it to be that way. Like a lot of other musicians, he sees the “free/pay what you want” model as the wave of the future. It’s better to let people have it for free than to have them steal it. The individual songs can be downloaded by naming your price, and the albums are free for the taking. Grab Asleep In The Collapse here.

As always, I welcome all submissions to the mailbag. If you’re a band, label intern, promoter, or whatever, send me your stuff. I prefer download codes, soundcloud, bandcamp, and the like. I really don’t like dropbox, so please avoid sending me files that I have to use dropbox to get. I also like physical CD copies. I prefer the inclusion of an EPK or a one-sheet, or some other kind of biographical information and a photo. I make no promises other than that I will give each submission a fair listen.
Keep them coming.

About dlee

North Carolina born and bred. I'm a restaurant guy who spends free time listening to music, watching hockey and playing Scrabble. I have a bachelor's degree in political science and I will most likely never put it to use. View all posts by dlee

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