The child of a former music business executive and a former Broadway actress, Chris Cohen has quietly, patiently been making music for well over a decade now.
Working as a contributing member of Curtains, Cryptacize, Deerhoof, and Natural Dreamers, the songwriter has been involved in more than ten full length albums. As if that wasn't enough, Chris Cohen has also been a touring player with White Magic, Cass McCombs, Haunted Graffiti and Danielson, among others.
So it's fair to say that he's earned his stripes. Recently deciding to focus on his own material, Chris Cohen made the bold step of working under his own name. Teaming up with esteemed American independent Captured Tracks, new album 'Overgrown Path' is a real gem.
Largely recorded by Cohen himself, 'Overgrown Path' is melodic yet gently unconventional - a bit like an American parallel to Robert Wyatt, or even the more Acid fuelled moments of Kevin Ayers. Out now, we asked Chris Cohen to name his own favourite psychedelic classics.
Here's his response...
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Sproton Layer - 'Magnetic Fields Disrupted'
Bought on cassette in high school (early 90's) as a reissue, because it was on New Alliance Records and I was super into the Minutemen. A teenage Roger Miller and his 2 brothers and friend in 1970. So awesome, free form, aggressive - drums, bass, guitar, trumpet...
Bubble Puppy - 'Gathering of Promises'
Another high school favourite, I listened to this one over and over... loved the harmonized guitars, the unusual/awkward song structures, the intense riffery. 'Thinkin' About Thinkin'' might actually be their best song but was only released as a single.. here's a live version of their hit 'Hot Smoke & Sassafras' from the 70's or 80s:
Silberbart - '4 Times Sound Razing'
Props to Brian Turner from WFMU on this one... German hard-psych trio with great-sounding yet incomprehensible English lyrics.. heaviest, heaviest out of tune guitars, incredible double-kick fill around 00:38 this whole album is great and full of lots of interesting musical ideas executed with fierce intent.
Battered Ornaments - Mantle Piece On the mellower side, this probably really is a lost one... I heard it from Edan. 'Late Into the Night' has a loose groove with a strange harmonic sense, like it doesn't really know where to go... suspenseful and hard to pin down.
Leigh Stephens - 'Red Weather'
Leigh Stephens was the original Blue Cheer guitarist - weird, ungainly lead phrasing, big bends and incredible guitar tone. 'Red Weather' (his 1st solo album) has a thick and disoriented feel to it, which I love. When it was reissued in the late 90's and I finally heard it, it was everything I dreamt of and more...
Photo Credit: Kate Dollenmayer
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'Overgrown Path' is out now.
Chris Cohen has confirmed the following shows:
10 Brighton Prince Albert
12 Manchester Trof Fallowfield
13 Bristol Start The Bus
14 London The Lexington