Jim James Announces New Solo Album, Shares Video for New Song “Just a Fool” | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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Jim James Announces New Solo Album, Shares Video for New Song “Just a Fool”

Uniform Distortion Due Out June 29 via ATO

Apr 17, 2018
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My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James has announced a new solo album, Uniform Distortion, and shared a video for its first single, the electric guitar fueled "Just a Fool." Uniform Distortion is due out June 29 via ATO. Ellis Bahl directed the black & white "Just a Fool" video. Watch it below, followed by the album's tracklist and cover art. It's all via Stereogum (who premiered the video).

The album's cover art is a distorted photo by Duane Michals entitled "The Illuminated Man." James came across it while flipping through The Last Whole Earth Catalogue, a resource from 1971. Michals' turned down James' initial request to use the photo on the cover of Uniform Distortion so James wrote him a personal letter and then Michaels agreed. James has shared the letter to help illuminate Uniform Distortion. Here it is in full (with no capital letters, as written by James):

"hello duane- your piece 'the illuminated man' was used in 'the last whole earth catalogue' in 1971. i wasnt even born yet. i was born in 1978...but i found my copy of 'the last whole earth catalogue' about 6 months ago in a thrift store and it blew my mind. i have been feeling increasingly overwhelmed by the speed of technology and its place in our lives and here was this beautiful book/catalogue from the past showing me all these beautiful things and amazing images to help one learn different ways to look at the world... or 'get off the grid?' funny they had no idea back then just how crazy 'the grid' would get. or did they?

so i am trying to put down my phone... use the computer and social media less... and just focus on real life and the people i love and my art. of course i am not fully 'off the grid' because i am sending you this email in hopes of you changing your mind about letting me use your image as it appeared in 'the last whole earth catalogue' in 1971 because when i saw it on the page there it spoke to me so deeply of how my head feels like it is exploding with the amount of information we are forced to consume on a daily basis and how that information is so DISTORTED there is almost no longer any tangible truth. the name of my new record is 'UNIFORM DISTORTION' because i feel like there is this blanket distortion on society/media and the way we gather our 'news' and important information...and more and more of us are feeling lost and looking for new ways out of this distortion and back to the truth...and finding hope in places like the desert where i write this email to you now...finding hope in the land and in the water and in old books offering new ideas and most importantly in each other and love.

i feel like there was a reason i found 'the last whole earth catalogue' and there was a reason your art spoke to me... and i really think it would speak to others who would see it exploding out at them illuminating from the record store shelf or the glow of their phone or computer screen and feel its organic mind blowing distortion connect with this new music.

i also like the natural 'distortion' that time and the pulp of the paper meeting the ink from 'the last whole earth catalogue' add to your original image and that is why i am asking your permission to use this 'distorted' version of your original beautiful image.

i hope you are well and thanks for listening- jim james"

James released an excellent solo album, the politically-charged Eternally Even, in the fall of 2016 via ATO (it was one of Under the Radar's Top 100 Albums of 2016). Last December James released Tribute To 2, an album of covers that was the sequel to his 2009 George Harrison covers EP Tribute To (which was also reissued last year).

My Morning Jacket released their last album, The Waterfall, in 2015. Read our 2015 interview with Jim James about the album.

Uniform Distortion Tracklist:

01 "Just A Fool"
02 "You Get To Rome"
03 "Out of Time"
04 "Throwback"
05 "No Secrets"
06 "Yes to Everything"
07 "No Use Waiting"
08 "All In Your Head"
09 "Better Late Than Never"
10 "Over and Over"
11 "Too Good to Be True"

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