“[T]here’s no such thing as Ariel Pink,” Ariel Rosenberg recently told SPIN, “It’s kinda complicated but kinda not.” And this is no doubt the referential basis on which he dedicates this album to Bobby Jameson, with him being the victim of hype losing sense of himself, as Ariel, who is known for being propped by Animal Collective’s in-house record label, detaches himself from his work, keeping his distance.
Dedicated to Bobby Jameson, which was released in mid-September 2017, is a modest album, which, with its head nods and references to synth-pop masters Kraftwerk as well as our much-missed David Bowie, with tempo, pace and yet melody. Time to Meet Your God is highly influenced by the Deutsch pioneers with elements of the Welsh Socialist Manics to insert the insular, whilst Dreamdate Narcissist is up-tempo surfer rock, which also looks to other Welsh talent, throwing in a layer of the psychedelic for good measure.
Do Yourself a Favor has the heavy scent of nostalgia with its sound and the reference to cassettes. Looking back at his back catalogue this album is unassuming and raw, no radio jingles, pop anthems or experimental sounds, it’s the Ariel Pink recoil we have been awaiting. Another Weekend bears parallel sounds to a classic song that compared falling in love to listening to a melodic pop track. The closing solo of the title track nods towards The Doors’ Light My Fire.
Whilst more accessible than Pink’s best albums, Bobby Jameson retains its immersive element. His music is dusted in nostalgia and random, filled with subtle hooks and inside jokes. I Wanna Be Young sounds prehistoric, archaic, which pinpoints doting on more youthful times whilst highlighting the technological recording drawbacks of those times. Pink’s matured with his subliminal messages rising to the surface.
Nostalgic, stripped down, dusty but with the maturity of a fine wine, Bobby Jameson is a fine album for a thought-meandering Ariel Rosenberg. The work of a musician growing and developing with experience we are kindly subjected to a set of songs that ooze in simplicity and charm. An intuitive record for nostalgic ears that like to listen through rose-tinted headphones.
Dedicated to Bobby Jameson was released on September 15th 2017 on Mexican Summer.