|Nicholas Krgovich — Who Cares? (2013)|
Nicholas Krgovich — Who Cares?
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada ~ South Pasadena, Los Angeles, CA
Album release: November 19, 2013
Record Label: JAZ Records/PW Elverum & Sun, Tomlab, 7 e.p.
01. Who Cares? 2:30
02. The Loser 2:48
03. A Trip to Town 2:47
04. Baby Blue Tutu 2:44
05. Party With Lewis 2:50
06. Simple Signs 2:25
07. People 2:34
08. The Golden Nugget 3:32
09. My Song 3:07
10. A Reverie 2:57
•¨• JZ — piano, keyboards, percussion, voice
•¨• Megan Bradfield — double bass
•¨• Christina Rzepa — cello
•¨• AJ Andrien — tuba
•¨• Lara Kroeker — voice
•¨• Kim Koch — violin, voice
•¨• Nathaniel Senff — baritone sax
•¨• Label: http://www.jazrecords.com/
By Alex Hudson
•¨• Written and produced by Nicholas Krgovich. Published by Shopping Music. Mastered by Timothy Stollenwerk. Photographs by Tygh Runyan. Design by Jan Lankisch. Released by JAZ Records.
•¨• Having released music with projects like No Kids, P:ano and Gigi, Vancouver pop maestro Nicholas Krgovich is now going by his own name for a new solo album. Dubbed Who Cares?, the album arrives tomorrow (November 19) through Jason Zumpano's Jaz Records.
•¨• Krgovich self-produced the 10-song LP. That's the album cover above and the tracklist below. Unlike the electronic soul sound of last year's Real Life covers collection, Who Cares? consists ultra-sparse acoustic tracks with just a few atmospheric overdubs. •¨• One of the Bandcamp tags is "mellow," which is definitely an apt description.
•¨• The songs were apparently composed in the winter while Krgovich was house-sitting for his aunt. An announcement reads, "Who Cares? is a small, short record. •¨• Perhaps even a personal one. It's a collection of truly bummed-out and lonely-sounding songs, but they're fashioned in such a quiet, composed and lovely way that they paradoxically end up being quite hopeful and tender. Laughter-through-the-tears in album form. Singing in a low, warm tenor and playing a guitar for the first time in ages, Krgovich presents a series of songs that are so spare and direct, they play out less like songs and more like little life events."
•¨• The announcement also hints at another to-be-released album, "a long-finished, four-years-in-the-making magnum opus, a widescreen paean to Los Angeles, written before he was living there in a small house in South Pasadena." (http://exclaim.ca/)
•¨• This is the first release in years from songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Krgovich and it is a strange one. When we last checked Krgovich was slinking around the floor to the icy, r'n'b inflected sophisti-pop of NO KIDS, or masterminding the Phil Spector indebted girl group sing-a-long's of GIGI, or manning the keyboards and touring the world with MOUNT EERIE and NITE JEWEL. There's also been the absence of a long finished, four-years-in-the-making magnum opus, a widescreen paean to Los Angeles, written before he was living there in a small house in South Pasadena. There's also the music composed for hair commercials starring Beyoncé's sister. So what do we have here?
•¨• WHO CARES? is a small, short record. Perhaps even a personal one. It's a collection of truly bummed out and lonely-sounding songs, but they're fashioned in such a quiet, composed and lovely way that they paradoxically end up being quite hopeful and tender. Laughter-through-the-tears in album form. Singing in a low, warm tenor and playing a guitar for the first time in ages, Krgovich presents a series of songs that are so spare and direct, they play out less like songs and more like little life events. •¨• Which is in keeping with how this work came about, earlier this year while Krgovich was mansion-sitting for his aunt.
•¨• In the middle of a cold, foggy winter up in the mountains, alone in a grand house where doors would slam and closets would creak open on their own, after returning from an extended stay in southern California where things were sunnier in almost every way, the songs ended up appearing out of nowhere. The only leading idea was to try approximate Frank Sinatra's sad sack masterpiece "Only The Lonely" sans the golden voice, and implying Nelson Riddle's orchestrations as opposed to actually hearing them. What we end up with is a beautifully intimate and clear recording of songs that intertwine Sondheim lyricism, doo wop melodic turns, and barely-there instrumentation which creates its own inviting and idiosyncratic world that leaves much to turn over and explore.
•¨• And how about the album title? Who cares? It's such an insane phrase, inherently carrying contractions and dual meanings. On one hand it's flippant, and the conversation ends, and on the other, it's clear-eyed and imploring. Be sure everything's going on here.
By M RUBZ on Nov 21 2013
•¨• At this point, I’m pretty convinced that Nicholas Krgovich is one of the most overlooked pop auteurs of our time. Various Krgovich projects, such as P:ano, No Kids, and Gigi, make it abundantly clear that the dude has a deep understanding of a myriad of pop genres and knows how to warp their harmonic/formal structures in consistently beautiful ways. On his latest solo record Who Cares?, Krgovich manages to combine a number of the various styles that his bands have mined into a subtle coherent whole that perfectly illustrates his songwriting craftsmanship.
•¨• Who Cares? is entirely centered around Krgovich’s voice and ukulele/guitar playing with minimal synths, bass, percussion, and backing vocals popping up on each track. This is perhaps the sparsest recording Krgovich’s done since P:ano’s minimal masterpiece Ghost Pirates Without Heads and there are definitely moments on ”Loser,” “My Song,” and “A Reverie” that recall the folky work of that album. However, lots of Who Cares? falls very much in line with Krgovich’s explorations of warped contemporary R&B with No Kids and 50’s girl groups with Gigi. While both No Kids and Gigi’s records often explored their respective styles through production/arrangements, Who Cares? manages to reference these signifiers through Krgovich’s chords and vocals alone, illustrated impeccably in tracks like “Baby Blue Tutu” and “Party With Lewis.” Krgovich’s vocals throughout the record are particularly remarkable. While he’s always been a strong singer, Who Cares? finds the songwriter displaying an impressive range and his ability to evoke so many stylistic references with such a minimum of materials is largely due to this new-found emphasis on crooning. All of this musical subtlety works beautifully to underscore one of the most bummed out and bleak narratives that Krgovich’s structured his records around. Fortaken: http://www.tinymixtapes.com/
|Nicholas Krgovich — Who Cares (2013)|