Ace news from Spin who report: “It’s hard to believe five years have gone by since Aimee Mann’s last studio album, Charmer. That’s half a decade and yet it feels like only a couple of years ago. Oh well, that’s what happens when you get old — time just drifts without pause. Fortunately it’s brought us to her here, to her forthcoming solo record, Mental Illness. Produced by longtime pal Paul Bryan, the album reportedly “shows off Mann’s rich, incisive, and wry melancholia in an almost all-acoustic format, with a ‘finger-picky’ style inspired by some of her favorite ‘60s and ‘70s folk-rock records.”
Much of that sound is realized in the album’s opening track, “Goose Snow Cone”, which starts off with some delicate wintry bells before it brilliantly stumbles into some kind of beautiful blend of acoustic folk that recalls everyone from James Taylor to Joni Mitchell to even Fleetwood Mac. Listen to it over at her official site [or there’s a short clip below if your clicking finger is feeling lazy]
As for the title, which sounds like a stroll through Bummerville, don’t get too hung up on it. The ever-hilarious singer-songwriter offers her own thoughts on the title in the album’s press release, stating:
“I assume the brief on me is that people think that I write these really depressing songs. I don’t know—people may have a different viewpoint—but that’s my own interpretation of the cliché about me. So if they thought that my songs were very down-tempo, very depressing, very sad, and very acoustic, I thought I’d just give myself permission to write the saddest, slowest, most acoustic, if-they’re-all-waltzes-so-be-it record I could … I mean, calling it Mental Illness makes me laugh, because it is true, but it’s so blunt that it’s funny.”
Phew. Thank god. Besides, who could be too depressed with this sort of company: Joining her on this record are Jonathan Coulton on acoustic guitar and backing vocals, Jay Bellerose on drums, Jamie Edwards on piano, John Roderick as a co-writer and her recent co-conspirator in The Both, Ted Leo, as a background singer.
The album’s out March 31st via her own SuperEgo Records, and she’ll support it shortly after with an impressive North American run of dates that kick off on April 20th at DC’s own Lincoln Theatre.
Mental Illness Tracklist:
01. Goose Snow Cone
02. Stuck In The Past
03. You Never Loved Me
05. Lies Of Summer
06. Patient Zero
07. Good For Me
08. Knock It Off
09. Philly Sinks
10. Simple Fix
11. Poor Judge
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