I Said, “Hey Jonny your guitar on this new record has me thinking Gilmour and Guthrie. How do you feel about that?”
Jonny said, “Very flattered, but I`m not anywhere near those guys.”
“Exit Strategies” sounds as if Pink Floyd`s Dave Gilmour has been asked to act as sponsor for Cocteau Twin`s Robin Guthrie at Stomp Box Anonymous, allowing Guthrie to take centre stage, but reigning him in, talking him down, every time he reaches for the “11” on his beloved “Big Muff” and “Electric Mistress”, about to flood everything with effects and delay, like the Fast Show`s Johnny and his tube of black paint. There is a veil of reverb here but Gilmour-esque Space Blues detail its edges.
I said, “Jonny, who are your guitar heroes?”
And Jonny said, “My favourite players are probably Manuel Gottsching, Steve Hillage and Vini Reilly.”
Hillage is in there, and Vini. “Exit 6” adds Jonny`s vocals, and then I can hear A.R. Kane and Slowdive. Shoegaze, Dream Pop, winkie girls whispering promises. The chiming of early Creation bands, their magpie eyes on the prize. Biff bang pow.
I said, “Jonny, is this what you were aiming for?”
“I wasn`t really aiming for a shoegaze-y sound, but I knew I wanted to do something with the guitar and layering it. I love this particular unit that I have, and was really just experimenting, layering in the machine.”
“Why “Exit Strategies” mate?”
“I was thinking a lot about leaving London last year and this record is the result of those thoughts.”
And then he packed his bags for Bali.
You can pre-order a copy of “Exit Strategies” over at the Melody As Truth Bandcamp page.