2018Joan of Arc w/ Curt Castle, Nathanael Jordan
AugustDoors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $12adv / $14
The less we feel like a band—the more we can continue to be a band, but escape that feeling of doing all those shitty, corny things expected of bands—the truer to ourselves we feel. And you all know it, everyone knows it even if everyone has to bury it to get on with their day-to-day: the truer to ourselves we feel, the better everything gets. We have shifted shapes and modified our approaches quite a number of times in the course of twenty years. And we’ve done so always aiming to stay true to ourselves at that moment, by instinct and with conscious intent. This time, it took us a long time to figure out how to start back up. We threw away a lot of songs and started over, over and over.
But here’s the thing: We are getting better at being ourselves. So many of the postures of youth just fall away with time. Most bands break up by that point, or become caricatures of their younger selves. Because money is tricky, or I should say, it comes to be that energy is tricky to muster after all of it goes into the basics of sustaining yourself.
Every day, at some point, it occurs to me that Richard Brautigan killed himself at the age that I am now. But I got this community of weirdo collaborators to lean on that he never had.
We’ve never had an audience that gets any validation of its coolness through liking us. We’ve mangled, juxtaposed, and collaged too many elements for that social contract. But we trust each other.
This time, finally, we trusted each other enough to throw all the songs away, to even throw away every preconceived idea about which one of us should take position at which instrument. We hit Record and played, and our collective tastes emerged. And they, our tastes in the moment, were the only standards in all the expanse of the stupefying and beautiful unknown universe, that we regarded as relevant in the least.
- Tim Kinsella
The album features a sonic landscape built on dynamic arrangements inspired by Harry Nilsson, soaked in synthetic sound reminiscent of Thomas Dolby's production work, and occasionally interspersed with electric guitarmony. The main engine of the songs are the up front emotion of the lyrics and the catchy melodies they ride on. “Chances,” the first track on the record, is a piercing look at a relationship on the verge of falling apart. “All the Love in the World” looks at living with grief where each breath feels like an act of survival and triumph. And “Across State Lines (Supernova)” finds cautious hope in new love.
Now, Curt Castle has built up a high energy live show honed while opening around the country for headliners like GIVERS, Dent May, Roadkill Ghost Choir and many others. There’s a full band bringing the songs to life. In these live environments, If I’m Here At All ’s songs about loneliness create an atmosphere of togetherness.