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Johnathan Rice Is Not Having Fun Anymore With 'Good Graces'

she calls the shots, he doesn’t give a shit

Jenny Lewis’ half, Johnathan Rice, has a new album entitled ‘Good Graces’ (which has been out since September 17th) and the singer-songwriter has just released a very gory and gruesome video for the song ‘Nowhere At The Speed Of Life’! Last time I heard from him, he was part of Jenny & Johnny, and they were having fun, but this time he is alone at the top of a pile of dead bodies!06

It had escaped me, but, mid August, Rice had already released a first video for the song ‘My Heart Belongs to You’ off this album, and the mini black and white movie was already quite freaky: the 60s-influenced pop-ballad was the scene of an odd spectacle, showing a bunch of excited groupies literally vomiting and peeing on themselves, and even tearing their bloody hearts out of their chests as a sacrifice for their idol. Plain weird!

I don’t know how long he wants to continue with this gory style, but this new one tells me it’s not over. People on ecstasy pills in a night club are experiencing some bad side effects, and soon everyone is crying more blood than the vampires in ‘True Blood’, while sweaty-greasy-long-hair Rice sings with hushed vocals ‘We are going nowhere at the speed of light’ over a fast tempo and some upbeat dance rhythms. Why all these dark thoughts? In an interview, Rice explained he was trying to write ‘healing music’, because of some very personal reasons:

‘Some people really close to me had been going through an exceptionally rough time, therefore I was going through a rough time,” he admits. “People that I love very much were struggling with extreme darkness. Thoughts of suicide and deep hopelessness. Fundamental questions like: do I want to be here or not? That absolutely informed the writing of this record. It wasn’t about exploring how difficult and dark things were and lamenting the situation. I tried to heal myself and the people around me with the music. It was about finding the frequencies, the melodies, and the words that would help. That was in the front of my mind. That was the best I could do for the people I love the most.’

He even gave an insight about this precise song:

‘I’ve always loved juxtaposing happy upbeat melodies with darker lyrics. I think the character in that song feels like his life has stalled, and his dreams have lost value. Life is at a standstill, so to speak. As far as the music goes, I’m a rock or folk musician, and I live in that world, obviously. I do love dance music though. I tried to write a rock song that had a similar energy to a dance song.’

I guess it’s no more Jenny & Johnny’s fun, and hello Johnathan’s darkness! ‘Good Graces’ is now available on iTunes, and here are the tracklist and Johnathan Rice’s tour dates:

Track List:

1. Acapulco Gold
2. My Heart Belongs to You
3. Nowhere At the Speed of Light
4. Lou Rider
5. Empty Heads
6. Good Graces
7. Surfer’s Lament
8. Soldiers
9. The Summer Feeling

Tour dates:

9/19 – Omaha, NE
9/22 – Portland, ME
9/23 New York, NY
9/24 – York, PA
9/25 – West Long Branch, NJ
9/27 – Urbana, IL
9/28 – Cincinnati, OH
9/29 – Chicago, IL
10/1 – Iowa City, IA
10/2 – Columbia, MO
10/4 – Oklahoma City, OK
10/5 – Dallas, TX
10/31 – Houston, TX
11/1 – Austin, TX
11/2 – Austin, TX
11/5 – Little Rock, AR
11/6 – Oxford, MS
11/7 – Saint Louis, MO
11/8 – Louisville, KY
11/9 – Columbus, PA
9/22, 9/24-25, 10/1-10/5 supporting Dawes
9/24-9/25 also with Hayes Carll
9/27 with Dawes, Kurt Vile & The Violators

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