Premiere: John Vanderslice Debuts New Single “Taverns of the neo subcortex” | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Saturday, September 18th, 2021  

Premiere: John Vanderslice Debuts New Single “Taverns of the neo subcortex”

New EP I can't believe civilization is still going here in 2021! Congratulations to all of us, Love DCB Is Out July 16th

Jul 09, 2021 Photography by Andrea DeSouto
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When David Berman of Silver Jews and Purple Mountains passed in 2019 tributes flowed in from across the musical landscape describing the impact the legendary poet and singer/songwriter left behind. Musician and producer John Vanderslice had his own special connection to Berman, with who he struck up a friendship 15 years before. The pair traded postcards, songwriting tips, and photos of pro-wrestlers. One of the cards from Berman read, “I can’t believe civilization is still going here in 2008! Congratulations to all of us, Love, DCB.”

An updated version of that message acts as the title for Vanderslice’s upcoming EP, his tribute to Berman’s life and influence, and an anti-suicide pact with himself. Vanderslice has already shared his first single from the EP, “I get a strange kind of pleasure from just hanging on,” and he’s now back with his second and final single from the EP, “Taverns of the neo subcortex,” premiering with Under the Radar.

Though the EP is undoubtedly a tribute, Vanderslice goes about it more obliquely, a fashion Berman would surely have appreciated. There are no covers and Vanderslice breaks away from traditional singer/songwriter molds, preferring to explore glitchy and abstract electronics instead. In this mix of acoustic and electronic instrumentation “Taverns of the neo subcortex” thrives, pairing strums of acoustic guitar with skeletal synthetic loops and beats.

All around the heady mix Vanderslice weaves a loving tribute to Berman’s artistry and a cautious warning. As he explains, “This song is filled with nods to David’s writings, especially his amazing The Portable February. The last song on the EP with any kind of guidance, the lyrics warn the listener to be vigilant about their mental health. ‘Don’t leave death a nice clean shot.’”

Coinciding with the release, John Vanderslice also is sharing a rarities collection titled ETHICAL JUTE MOUSE: Lost Songs From Tiny Telephone 2001-2021, featuring 17 tracks from the last 20 years, including “Time Travel Is Lonely” featuring Spoon and covers of Radiohead’s “Karma Police” and Songs: Ohia’s “Long Dark Blues.”

Check out “Taverns of the neo subcortex” below, along with Vanderslice’s upcoming tour dates, and watch for his new EP and rarities collection, out July 16th.

John Vanderslice · 06 - Taverns Of The Neo Subcortex - 1644

Upcoming Tour Dates

Aug 4: Nashville, TN

Aug 5: Knoxville, TN

Aug 6: Cincinnati, OH

Aug 7: Indianapolis, IN

Aug 8: Kalamazoo, MI

Aug 10: Chicago, IL

Aug 11: Chicago, IL

Aug 12: Chicago, IL

Aug 13: Minneapolis, MN

Aug 14: Des Moines, IA

Aug 15: Omaha, NE

Aug 17: Kansas City, MO

Aug 18: Oklahoma City, OK

Aug 19: Denton, TX

Aug 20: Austin,TX

Aug 21: Austin, TX

Aug 23: Houston, TX


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