Following 2009’s acclaimed We Are Only Riders collection, The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project return with a second volume of the late Gun Club leader’s previously-unreleased works-in-progress, brought to life by old friends, collaborators and acolytes.
Pierce, who was infamous for his hard-drinking, hard drugging and hell-raising died from a brain haemorrhage in 1996. His band the Gun Club, poured America’s roots music forms into a post-punk blender, releasing a series of iconic albums in the ‘80s that influenced a generation of artists and songwriters including the Jack White, Jon Spencer (JSBX/ Boss Hog), and any Australians such as Nick Cave, Scientsts, Hoodoo Gurus, Beasts of Bourbon and The Drones.
Many of these songs started as nascent ideas captured on a cassette unearthed by Pierce’s latter day collaborator Cypress Grove while clearing out his loft. Harking back to the collective ethos of Pierce’s beloved jazz, artists spill into each other’s tracks, reinterpreting or finishing lyrical and melodic sketches while some chose personal favorites from his catalogue.
“The idea was that, these are not our songs, we merely interpret them,” explains Cypress Grove. “This is not a tribute album, but brand new material from beyond the grave. In some cases the artists have had to finish the
songs, so there can be no nonsense about this not being as good as the original version... as these are the original versions! Many of the artists appear on each others tracks, like a true collective. Warren Ellis appears on the Nick Cave tracks, but also plays with Lydia Lunch, who also sings with Tex Perkins and Barry Adamson, as well as doing her own track. Barry plays bass on Lydia’s track and Nick Cave’s ‘The Breaking Hands’, and so on. Its is a concept comparable to Josh Homme’s ‘Dessert Sessions’ project.
A third and final volume called The Task Has Overwhelmed Us is already being collated for release later in the year.
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