Mark Eitzel says this of “Hey Mr Ferryman,” his 12th solo album and first in five years: “The songs on this record are about celebrating musicians and music, about misogyny, the long shadow of history, getting one’s head out of one’s ass. Also oceans, blood, skies, hearts, gay pioneers, carpenters, weeping women, and how death waits for you even in the happiest place on earth: Las Vegas.” He may be understating things, of course, because as is the case with the 57-year-old singer-songwriter’s output over his illustrious career, his songs often tend to be about wherever they take you. Here, on his second solo full-length for Merge Records and his first recorded entirely in London, his typically weary-but-willing vocals glide over easy melodies and production from Suede’s Bernard Butler. You want to fall back on the cliché about the “veteran songwriter still at the height of his powers,” except dating back to his early solo work and his days in American Music Club, Eitzel’s have never shown too many signs of diminishing. The album is out Jan. 27, the day after his L.A. show.
||| Stream: “An Answer” and “The Last Ten Years”
||| Live: Mark Eitzel does a co-headining show with Howe Gelb on Jan. 26 at Resident. Tickets.