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IV. The Obligatory End of Year Post

Happy holidays, everybody!

I guess we’ve actually been at this for a year now, huh? What started out as Sunday afternoon fun has pushed forth into smoky Midtown bars and art communes in Arkansas. There are tons of people to thank, and I like to think we make sure and let them know as often as possible that they are appreciated.

Two organizations in particular that merit a bit of a public shout-out would be The Poplar Lounge, who gave us a place to work on how to express these ideas in front of people, and La Lucha Space in Conway, Arkansas who showed us performing live doesn’t necessarily have to be guided by the beer light (to crib a phrase from David Bowie). Thank you, friends.

Also, what would this year be like were it not for the sharp ear and deft hand of one Harry Koniditsiotis? Six songs into recording album numero uno and he’s coaxed some amazing things out of us. Two or three more tunes and I think we can call it finished. Thank you, cap’n.

I need to make sure you know that this whole affair seemed sort of improbable when 2013 began. I need to make sure you know that this would not have happened without Patrick Glass and Maggie Bausch, who were around when this started and whose busy schedules precipitated a change of personnel. They are Pneumatic Girls as well, and will always be.

I don’t know about 2014. Who does? I do hope the momentum continues on and that we can play more music for you, whether it’s on your stereo or laptop, or during another night out on the town with cheap beer and chain smokers.

We love you!
Jack P and the Girls

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III. Matchbox Saints and Disappearing Girls

The thought of putting out a single to precede our debut album came to me in perhaps early November, when we received rough mixes for the second batch of songs we recorded. A couple of liberties were taken and we had a guest player for the song “Fall” – Jason Pulley, piano man about town whom I spent time with in the Near Reaches.

Stop right there, actually. The original thought was to have him reprise his counter-melody on the song “(If I Held You) Close To Me”, but then Harry had the brilliant idea to have Jason play organ on “Fall”…to tap into the early Nineties Madchester vibe a la the Charlatans.

When the mixes came back, I recall thinking “Fall” had been transformed by this eleventh-hour addition, and I asked Harry if I could do a separate mix using the original multitracks. All told, I don’t know how different this “single mix” will actually be from the final album mix, but I made sure the organ had a prominent role.

It seemed silly to burn CD-Rs with just one track, so I turned to the live recordings we’d been making during our residency at the Poplar Lounge. One particular week turned out fairly well, so I pulled the six most solid tracks from that recording to make up the rest of this EP. Regrettably, you don’t get much of an audience vibe from these tracks – for whatever reason, the Poplar Lounge can be a hard sell – but you can tell the band sounds like four people who honestly enjoy what they’re doing together.

I don’t entirely know when the album will come out – I think the aim is to record maybe three more tracks. It seems pretty obvious that “Girl, Disappear” should be one of them, and perhaps “Lost In the Fire”. We’ll leave that decision to a band fresh off a December holiday, though. Maybe 2014 will be our year.