Listening: Giant Sand
Giant Sand: "Fields of Green"
Terrific return to form from Howe Gelb's Giant Sand, from the forthcoming Blurry Blue Mountain on Fire Records. Gelb ponders aging and losing one's heroes to shuffling, subdued instrumentation. Giant Sand was one of my favorite bands during the early 1990s, when I was mesmerized by the albums Giant Sandwich, Long Stem Rant and Swerve, but though I loved loved loved the first three songs on 1994's Glum, I was sorely disappointed that the rest of the album deteriorated into aimless self-indulgence. Then after Joey Burns and John Convertino - one of the best rhythm sections around - left the band to make Calexico their full-time gig, I mostly lost track of Giant Sand. But "Fields of Green" has suddenly revived my interest, and I'll probably be reacquainting myself with Gelb's eccentric vision very soon.