Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Sound engineering by Mike Gentry
If the funding were available, one could make a case for buying the biggest, yet climbable mountain out there. The size of the mountain really isn't the most important part of this idea, but it should be of such a height that its ascension is something of a challenge and not just an act that can be carried out by any old tourist or grade-schooler. Those who could reach the top of it so easily would just waste the experience at the top anyway. We're looking for the clientele that could appreciate the glories and pearls of wisdom that Kyp Malone could give them when they'd had a chance to pull themselves over that final edge of rock. It would be at that moment, after they'd rallied up the strength to heave all of their body weight across the threshold at the feet of one of the founding/most easily recognized members of the innovative and pioneering Brooklyn art rock band TV On The Radio and the main man behind a solo project that he's calling Rain Machine, that these folks would collect their breaths and finally ask what was on their minds, hoping that they would have some wisdom bestowed upon them by a man who seems to literally scream and gyrate with the wisdom that they so eagerly seek. Up here, the understated serenity that Malone and his mile-long bush of a salt and peppered beard seem to exude would be fitting for an environment meant to remain free of all other distractions and medicines. It would be the medicine that he could prescribe that would be the only one that you'd feel obliged to take and take regularly. Malone comes across as a sage of a man, willing to keep his thoughts rooted in the very fundamental claims of the curious heart, speaking from the points of view of the rage and of the collected knowledge of great books and fine philosophic minds who have thought and thought and thought about such matters. His Rain Machine songs are aggressive and uplifting and they're dark and freakishly somewhat spiritual in that they almost always make you want to burst out the door with new fire fuels your limbs. It's as if he's the kind of guy who can force an awakening and make you see things differently, even if the advice he might offer up there on our ceremonial mountaintop was loose and vaguely applicable. The same has always been said about Confucius and those thin strips of paper that he wanted in all of those stale cookie middles. It's as if the yelps and the times when Malone reaches into the back of his throat and summons up the fireplace in the pits of his stomach, right next to the soul parts, it's all coming from some old and tested dimension that's not of these days. The words that he sings and the energies that he chooses to expend and meld here with the wonderful vocals of Sharon Van Etten (the opening act on this tour and a member of his touring band - soon to be featured on the site) are those that come from lion cusses and from hearts that have been hotwired and taken for joyrides - returned with balder tires and with some chips of paint gouged out from the side paneling. It's pissy and it's alive with concerned temperatures, aching to be figured out and that's why those who would choose to scale a mountain to consult the ever-knowing brain of a guru, or a man with a lengthy beard and a warm gaze would find value in what this particular man would have to say. It wouldn't be preachy or light, just dense enough to be interpreted appropriately and agitated enough to speak directly to you and all of your issues.
Rain Machine Official Site