By Johnny Firecloud at 6:31 AM Wednesday, July 6th 2011
Last week we told you about Live From Nowhere Near You, Vol II, the upcoming three disc compilation with a staggering amount of high-profile contributing talent. Arriving on July 19, the comp features new, unreleased and rare tracks from Modest Mouse, Daniel Johnston, Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, members of Pearl Jam, Bright Eyes, Corin Tucker, Elliott Smith, Joe Purdy, Woodie Guthrie, James Mercer of The Shins and many more.
At the time, we played a collaboration cover of the Marvin Gaye classic Mercy, Mercy, Me between Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme and the Strokes. Now, we’ve got an exclusive for the Modest Mouse fans out there.
Have a listen to a rare and unreleased track from Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock, called Dead End Job At The Dead Letter Office.
Antiquiet spoke with Kevin Moyer, the cultivator and engine behind this eight-year project, who shared the following on how the track came to be included on the album – as well as the story of the song’s origin:
“When we first talked about the effort and him contributing, he wanted to do a cover song and for the life of me I cannot remember what it was, just that I wanted to record him doing it under a bridge or in a park near his house at night. But he got busy with doing the album No One Is First and You’re Next, so we started looking at old tracks already in the can to include instead.
“Around that time I came upon some old tapes of Isaac as a 14 year old young kid playing music with friends in a shed using an old answering machine to record, and spent a considerable amount of time trying to clean those up, but Isaac did not want to use those as he felt it was “strip mining his past” and I had to agree. And just FYI on those tapes – Uncle Bunny Faces and Tube Fruit – he was just a teenager, only fourteen on some them, and he dumpster dived every tape that these were recorded onto from the MUZAK dumpsters in Seattle. Isaac tells me that these were never intended as demos, the term “demo” implies that you made the recordings to get people to become interested for a REAL record – and these were the REAL records. Isaac only gave them to close friends at the time and I can tell that he has a hard time hearing that these were for ever put up for sale by anyone. Again, with the strip mining his past.
“Anyways, we decided to figure something else out and our schedules were having trouble aligning. Finally, one stormy night I was supposed to meet Isaac and his girlfriend at his house, but he wasn’t there so I sat and waited on the porch for a few watching the trees bend in the storm. When the rain seemed to settle a bit I got in my car and left, only to get a text message from him on my way home saying to come back. I vividly remember the rain smearing down the windshield and the blurring green and reds of the traffic lights in the night as I turned the car around and almost got T boned by a semi truck running a red light doing about 60MPH. Finally though, I was back at Isaacs in the warmth of his house, sitting around a table drinking wine and listening to music.
“The track that we finally chose is called Dead End Job At The Dead Letter Office and was recorded back in 1993 at Pat Maley’s Yoyo Studios in Olympia, WA. This track is almost as old as the band and there is no recollection as to what this was recorded for particularly, other than just for the sake of recording music. The song features Isaac Brock on vocals and guitar, Dann Gallucci on guitar, and Jeremiah Green on drums. At the time, Isaac was sleeping in the hallway of a house with about 13 other people living in it; as was Dan, who was living in someone’s closet.”
The Volume Two effort is three CD combining for over 210 minutes of music. Check out all the participating artists here. You can get the whole set right now at Greyday Records for only $15, which also includes a digital download version. Preordering is the only way to get all of the tracks on the release (there are a couple of big name artists that won’t appear on the digital only versions). Most of the compilation’s 64 tracks are exclusive to the album and cannot be found anywhere else.
All profits from this release will be donated to Outside In, a non-profit organization in Portland, OR focused on providing aid and counseling to homeless youth. Keep an eye on the organization’s Facebook page, where they will be releasing more details in the coming days.