Myopes and Dreams
Please welcome these engaging, under-adorned arrangements for guitar and/or piano from the former Claw Hammerer and current leader of The Amadans. Jon Wahl croons, moans, yodels, yowls, tenors and baritones us through folk tales of urban avian ordure avengement, Gaelic Goodwill, cosmic contemplations and two cerulean lunar soundscapes.
It was soon after the demise of Clawhammer, and leader Jon Wahl took to winding the streets of Los Angeles only to return home to record the melodies in his head, ever so quietly as to not awake the neighbors who lived on either side of him. These recordings reached the ears of the Birdman, and served as demos for the drastically under appreciated Sour Sweet full length.
But there was something to the demos: where Jon played all the instruments with the fragility and sorrow of the silence of the night -- something to the demos that conjured the presence of early Mayo Thompson solo recordings, holding steady while intentionally falling apart.
Here is the invisible bridge between Captain Beefheart to the weirdo beard-os of today. Jon's voice is the Elvis of Mosquitos and the playing is as ginger as a bluesman's on a hot Mississippi afternoon. Beautiful and solemn, a late night waltz.
Self-engineered in his humble sitting room as Claw Hammer was petering out and The Amadans were petering in, these twelve tracks offer a stark glimpse inside the id of this singular song craftsman. Thrill to the fancy guitar flourishes awash within "She Was Plastic", the sharp interpretation of The Residents' "Sinister Exaggerator", the gripping minor chord changes that make up "Backlash" and (finally seeing the light of day) the bliss-inducing diary entry set to music that is "Sing Low Steve Marriott" (Wahl's "Desolation Row" by way of the ghostly hand of Allan Sherman).