In the latter part of last decade and the early part of this one, singer-guitarist John Carpenter spent substantial time in Los Angeles doing two things: 1) causing jaws to drop with his dirty, deconstructed blues noir, and 2) saying, “No, not that John Carpenter.” After releasing some music via Mexican Summer along with the riveting full-length “Fairy Tales Forgotten,” which were anything but fairy tales, he vanished … to who-knows-where.
Turns out Carpenter moved to Nashville and then settled back on his native East Coast. He resurfaced this month, sounding like a man out of time. Joining the small roster at Acid Bird Records, Carpenter released a new EP, “When Night Comes Knocking.” His five skeletal psych- and surf-rockers only hint at the damage he can do with a guitar (revisiting “Fairy Tales” brings to mind some of Imaad Wasif’s work); see, for instance, the 1:51 mark of “I Could Be Anything.” It’s all raw and retro, not necessarily because that’s what Carpenter is going for but because it’s all the songs require. Thanks, from the bottom of our nerve endings.
||| Stream: “When Night Comes Knocking”
||| Also: Watch the video for the song
||| Also: Stream the whole EP via Spotify