“What has Ty Segall done this year? And who is he?”, you may ask. Well, to start with the basics: SoCal lo-fi thrasher Segall has released a mercurial triple-set of LPs this year, promoted each via non-stop touring, incited an apparent “garage renaissance”, and set a new, very loud standard for live guests on Chicago’s ‘WGN Morning News’. That’s all.
A Janus-esque artist in that he shuffles between parallel guises – each a treasury of golden-era-rock tropes and signifiers – in the last year Segall pastiched florid 1960s psych via White Fence duet ‘Hair’, dived full-tilt into his titular Band’s gory ‘Slaughterhouse’ disc, and still had the time, the capacity, the will and the sanity to birth new solo baby ‘Twins’. Whilst this hit-rate is easy to match in the quantitative sense – anyone can go and quickly release three LPs - Segall’s 2012 yield excels just as much as a trilogy as the sum of its parts, and is something to be lauded, and listened to.
Sounding a little jaded in the midst of an arduous and unglamorous tour, Segall has since said that the year he’s had, his “Year Of The Dragon”, isn’t one he’s apt (or physically able, even at 25) to repeat “ever again”. Then again, he still defines “rock n roll” as something free and autonomous, in that it “doesn’t tell you what to think and do” and “makes you feel a certain way, so you do those things on your own”.
So who knows? And given Segall’s past-proven want to sacrifice mind, body and psyche at the altar of prolificity, the new year 2013 – which the Chinese Zodiac deems Year Of The Snake – might be as serpentine as this one was. But that said, Ty’s definitely earned a T-break.
See all of CMU’s Artists Of The Year for 2012 here.