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Of Course You Are

Robert Pollard

Released: 03/04/2016
Format: CD
Label: Fire America
Catalog #: FAME004CD
Country: U.S.A.
Discs: 1
# Tracks: 12
Front Cover
Pressing Details
Vinyl Color # Pressed
Original Release Notes: Fire America is extraordinarily thrilled to release a Robert Pollard record world-wide. Of Course You Are is solo album number twenty four (!) by the tireless Guided By Voices auteur. Meticulously constructed, Of Course You Are is overstuffed with hooky tunes, riffs aplenty and skewed/skewering lyrics.

Pity the poor rock critic who tries to keep up with Robert Pollard. If your magnificent-opus-listening time is circumscribed, play track #6, "I Can Illustrate" three times in a row. The wizardry of Pollard's craft is easy to overlook on a cursory spin. Three listens and you'll be hooked, lined, and sinkered.

To some extent, the new solo album is a natural outgrowth of Pollard's 2015 work with Ricked Wicky; and to some extent it's a return to early-2000s Guided By Voices, with its combination of instrumental virtuosity and Pollard's uniquely oblique approach to songwriting. All of the instruments on Of Course You Are were played by Ricked Wicky's Nick Mitchell, who also recorded/produced the record, and Mitchell's evident musicianship lifts the material to another sonic level without over-polishing. The instrumental palette has been broadened discreet flourishes of strings, horns, piano (etc.) occasionally bring to mind baroque rock classics by the likes of Love and Cardinal. Which is not to say this is chamber pop. These songs are all determinedly guitar-driven, however textured, and rock as hard as anything Pollard's done to date. Mitchell's occasional virtuosic solos are concise, but the guy can shred, and when he does, he does. (We refer the listener to the exquisite "Promo Brunette" for illustration.) Mitchell is a heretofore hidden gem discovered by Pollard in their mutual Dayton, OH hometown.

As tuneful as you'd expect from anything issuing from Pollard's pen, Of Course You Are runs the usual gamut of Pop, Prog, Psych, and even Punk-oriented tracks. His vocals are impeccable, his phrasing as sharp as ever he seems invigorated by the collaborative juice provided by Mitchell, who himself has clearly been liberated by the opportunity to take the reins in the studio, and delivers in (aces of) spades.

Taking nothing away from any of Pollard's previous co-conspirators, Mitchell's inspired, unmuddied production and precise playing on Of Course You Are hits all the right marks underlining the direct emotional tug of "That's The Way You Gave It To Me" with melancholic Court of the Crimson King-era mellotron, providing a swirling psychedelic backdrop not too far removed from Mr. Blue Sky-era ELO on "Losing It," and punching up the album's rock-hard opener "My Daughter Yes She Knows." 'Long Live Instant Pandemonium's" classic rock riffs contrast the poignant strings on 'Come And Listen,' while 'Contemporary Man (He's Our Age)' foregrounds Pollard's vocal musings over kinetic percussion and electronics (and more strings).

Taken altogether, the twelve concise song-slabs on Pollard's first album of 2016 (you and I both know it won't be his last) make for both an auspicious start to the New Year of Bob and a welcome harbinger of great things to come. Don't sleep. Seriously. Don't.

Exclusive to Fire Records. Available for order in USA from Light In The Attic Records or from the Robert Pollard bandcamp page.
Of Course You Are
1.   My Daughter Yes She Knows 2:34
2.   Long Live Instant Pandemonium 2:23
3.   Come And Listen 2:54
4.   Little Pigs 2:27
5.   Promo Brunette 2:23
6.   I Can Illustrate 3:22
7.   The Hand That Holds You 2:40
8.   Collision Daycare 2:02
9.   That's The Way You Gave It To Me 2:55
10.  Contemporary Man (He Is Our Age) 2:26
11.  Losing It 3:07
12.  Of Course You Are 3:11
Total Length: 32:24
Other Formats
Label - Catalog [Format] (Country) # Tracks
Fire America - FAME004LP [LP] (U.S.A.) 12

Album Credits
Role Name
Back Cover Photo Sarah Zade-Pollard
Front Cover Collage Robert Pollard
Glasses Inserted Info Enlarged Photo Print Robert Pollard
Inside Sleeve Photo Jereme Sanborn
Layout Heidi Vaughan-Greenwood
Layout Robert Pollard
Scan Of Assemblage Joe Patterson
Treatment Of Inside Sleeve Photo Robert Pollard
Role Name
Instruments Nick Mitchell
Vocals Robert Pollard
Role Name
Engineer Nick Mitchell
Mastering Nick Mitchell
Producer Nick Mitchell
Role Name
Mastering Location Any Road Studio, Dayton, OH
Recording Location Any Road Studio, Dayton, OH
Role Name
Copyright 2016
Songwriter Robert Pollard
Role Name
Business Management Eric Weiss
Legal Richard Grabel
Management David Newgarden
Role Name
Additional Album Text A Factory Of Raw Essentials Product
Additional Album Text FIRE America
Additional Album Text Guided By Voices, Inc.
Additional Album Text www.firerecords.com
Additional Album Text www.robertpollard.net