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John Shirley & Jerry King | Spaceship Landing in a Cemetery

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Rock: Progressive Rock Rock: Psychedelic Moods: Featuring Guitar
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Spaceship Landing in a Cemetery

by John Shirley & Jerry King

"Blue Oyster Cult lyricist teams with guitar ace for a complicated but thrilling listen...Shirley and King take every opportunity to veer off into unpredictable tangents. From the atmospheric spoken word of Machinery of the Sea to the slightly sinister Lou Reed's Last Words... Some of it's genuinely thrilling. The sax on Tippy Top is a blast of unfettered Fela Kuti-style Afro-jazz, while the Claptonesque guitar solo on Iniquities is lovely. It all comes across as equal parts Zappa, Iggy Pop, Marvin Pontiac and late night radio host. It's the sound of someone spinning records and yarns on obscure frequencies for lost drivers and acid trippers. By any measure, it's complicated." Prog Magazine Issue 92, October, 2018
Genre: Rock: Progressive Rock
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Pigzipper (feat. Pete Prown, Ginger Marten, Mark Carlson, Jamie Bruhn, Travis Plantico & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
4:19 $0.99
2. Puppet Dance (feat. Michele King, Dave Newhouse, Ginger Marten, Chad Wardwell & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
4:46 $0.99
3. Nothing (feat. Mark Carlson, Michele King, Bill Jungwirth & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
4:36 $0.99
4. Machinery of the Sea (feat. Mark Carlson & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
3:40 $0.99
5. Iniquities (feat. Michele King, Mark Carlson, Mark Larson, Bill Jungwirth & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
5:25 $0.99
6. Silicon Embrace (feat. Bret Hart, Dave Newhouse & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
4:50 $0.99
7. Why Am I so Weird? (feat. Michele King, Mike Kinney, Jamie Bruhn, Mark Larson, Bret Harold Hart, Pete Prown, Tim Gessner & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
6:20 $0.99
8. Tippy Top (feat. Dave Newhouse, Jamie Bruhn, Mark Larson, Bill Jungwirth & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
5:36 $0.99
9. Lou Reed's Last Words (feat. Michele King, Mark Carlson, Jamie Bruhn, Bill Jungwirth & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
6:01 $0.99
10. High (feat. Ginger Marten, Bill Jungwirth & John Shirley)
John Shirley & Jerry King
5:39 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Dark poetry riding on the hot current of progressive rock, alt jazz, and pure musical creativity: John Shirley--vocalist and lyricist--collaborates with Jerry King, respected progressive guitarist and multi-instrumentalist songwriter. Superb musicians from the Lizardz and other wild projects collaborated with Jerry and John to create SPACESHIP LANDING IN A CEMETERY, an album that takes us from death to transcendence; from the dark night of the soul into the light of inner freedom. John's lyrics have been compared to Lou Reed and Leonard Cohen and Don Roeser; Jerry King's untethered guitar and compositional power has been compared to King Crimson and other prog greats.

The two artists at the heart of this extraordinary musical alchemy: John Shirley and Jerry King. Jerry wrote and recorded CLOUD OVER JUPITER, 5th MASS FROM THE SUN and was co-writer on the MOON MEN album "AMAZING SCIENCE FICTION STORIES"; he also played on the DIRATZ album, Jamie Bruhn's solo album "CIGARETTES AND LIES and the DUKES OF 1987's "RETRODERELICT." He appears on the compilation album FRETS OF YORE with Fred Frith and Henry Kaiser, and Greg Segal's album "INVISIBLE GROUND OF SYMPATHY". Having completed SPACESHIP LANDING IN A CEMETERY he's currently working on the new CLOUD OVER JUPITER album and the second album from MOON MEN. An upcoming interview about his work, including SPACESHIP LANDING IN A CEMETERY, appears in issue #74 of Progression Magazine.
In Portland, Oregon John Shirley was the original lead singer of Sado-Nation before going to New York to perform in Obsession, and San Francisco to lead The Panther Moderns and The Screaming Geezers. John has written the lyrics for eighteen songs recorded by the Blue Oyster Cult, including "See You in Black", and more songs by John are expected on the next Blue Oyster Cult album coming this fall. He's also written lyrics for Joe Bouchard, Dennis Dunaway and Al Bouchard for their up and coming band Blue Coupe. Writing lyrics comes naturally to John--he's not only a widely published poet, he's written numerous novels and the award-winning story collection Black Butterflies. He's now working with Mark Tremonti (Creed, Alter Bridges), to adapt Mark's new science-fiction rock opera into a novel: A DYING MACHINE. John's already gotten shout-outs in Billboard and at MSN and many other places for his work with Tremonti. John Shirley was also co-screenwriter of the movie THE CROW.



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Kenneth Huey

Songs of Death and Transcendence
Brian Eno is supposed to have said, "The Velvet Underground's first album only sold a few thousand copies, but everyone who bought one formed a band." That’s still playing out decades later, in examples such as the one at hand, “Spaceship Landing in a Cemetery,” by John Shirley (yes, THAT John Shirley) and his musical accomplice, prog maestro Jerry King.

The album covers a lot of musical territory, from the heavy metal poetics of the first cut, “Pigzipper,” to the Bowiesque "Why Am I So Weird?" "Iniquities" is a rock ’n’ roll confessional whose sentiments will be achingly familiar to any number of social misfits, while the Lynchian histrionics of"Puppet Dance" are reminiscent of Tom Waits.

The evocative sound sculptures of "Machinery of the Sea" and"Silicon Embrace" provide backgrounds for Shirley’s surrealistic narratives, while “High” is a lyrical, folk-inflected number about thoughts going through the mind of a man who’s just fallen out of an airplane.

And, coming back ‘round to where we started, we find "Lou Reed’s Last Words”— "we got to take a walk along the edge of a knife to reach the farther life.” Lou couldn’t have said it any better himself.