Posted: September 24, 2022 in MUSIC

It is thirty-two years since Bill Callahan first emerged with the debut Smog album, “Sewn To The Sky”. While there is barely a bad record in the bunch, listening to Bill’s recent output, we do seem to be living in some boom time, a thick vein of musical gold from an artist at the top of their craft. Both 2019’s “Shepherd in a Sheepskin Vest” and 2020’s “Gold Record” were instant classics, gracing many an album of the year list and drawing almost universally good reviews. Two years on, Bill’s set to share his latest offering in the shape of a new album, “YTI⅃AƎЯ“, out October 14th via Drag City, which Bill premiered this week with a new single, “Coyotes”.

The song was inspired by the time Bill spent living in Coyote Hills, and the inspiration that came from getting to know their titular animal, “the coyotes would start their song at dawn. Dawn and dusk were their main appearance times. Our dog would sleep outside sometimes in the morning and our boy was still bite-size“. As Bill recalls, the coyotes would gradually edge closer to the human world, “predator and prey, blurred. Past and present, blurred”. 

Listening to the track, it seems to be a relatively oblique influence, the coyotes sending Bill’s mind whirring into the passing of time, the way love spans lifetimes, the ageing dog that dreams of running wild with her coyote forebears, the humans, “holding hands through many lives”. The song ends with the repeated refrain, “yes I am your loverman”, in lesser hands it could feel almost trite, yet Bill says it with such gentle tenderness, with the idea of being with someone not just for now, or a lifetime, but for eternity, it seems strangely poignant. Bill Callahan paints such vivid lyrical pictures, that his return can feel like catching up with an old friend, let him take you by the hand and invite you into his “YTI⅃AƎЯ” once more, it’s a very special place to spend some time.

Bill Callahan’s new double album “YTI⅃AƎЯ,” out October 14th, 2022 on Drag City.

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