With “Twins,” Ty Segall Goes For The Triple Crown

Sportswriters drooled pure Red Bull and Skol last month when, for the first time since the chain-smoking Yaz did it in 1967, Miguel Cabrera won the Triple Crown.  But what are we to make of Ty Segall’s epic 2012, with Hair, his brilliant collaboration with Tim Presley/White Fence, released in the spring, Slaughterhouse, the grunge-metal roar by The Ty Segall Band which came out mid-summer, and then just this past week saw the thrilling Twins, released under the boy’s own name?

It’s been a long time since an artist has had such a year.  Sure, the Beatles often had to compete with themselves for the top of the charts, and there was that amazing run in 1970 by Creedence Clearwater Revival, but notwithstanding Elvis Costello’s streak from This Year’s Model to Imperial Bedroom, the closest thing in rock history we can find to compare to Mr. Segall’s awesome trifecta goes all the way back to Bowie, who in less than a year (1972-1973) released Ziggy Stardust, gave Mott The Hoople “All The Young Dudes,” recorded Pin Ups, his album of covers from the mid-Sixties London scene, and for the piece de resistance, put out Alladin Sane.

If, because you’ve been hiding under a rock, you find it surprising that this guy Ty Segall is being mentioned in the same breath as the Beatles, Creedence, Elvis Costello, and David Bowie, then maybe it is time to get out more.  Because in 2012, Ty Segall has emerged as a triple threat — a classic rock’n’roll singer whose self-harmonies on the brand new Twins evokes the best bands from the era in which Carl Yastrzemski got his Triple Crown, an ace lead and rhythm guitarist, and increasingly, an amazingly protean songwriter.  (It is notable that on Twins, Segall’s learned how to add actual bridges and instrumental sections to the verse/chorus and sometimes verse/no chorus formula from his 412 previous solo albums released between 2009, when he was 4-years old, and 2011, when he turned 24.)

Look, we’ll confide in you, but please don’t tell anyone: Hair, young Mr. Segall’s collaboration with White Fence, as brilliant an example of garagey-psychodelia as we’ve heard in years, is absolutely in contention for Tulip Frenzy’s Album Of The Year.  But careful readers will also remember that we weren’t so thrilled with the album he released in early July with The Ty Segall Band.  Even though, after having exulted in last year’s Goodbye Bread, we yearned for Ty to quit recording albums by himself, and to get a *real* drummer and a *real* bass player to back him up, we found Slaughterhouse to be a little slipshod, and we weren’t thrilled by the Sabbath riffs.  But how were we prepared for Twins?

Oh, Lordy, why do you think we’re dredging up references to David Bowie and John Fogerty?  On Twins, Ty Segall proves he has gone way beyond being simply a young tyro.  Yes, he plays all the instruments, and usually that’s self limiting, because few are the one-man bands that can actually swing, for it takes two to tango, and three to play drums, bass, and guitar with any kinda pogoing lilt.  And yet on this ‘un, Sir Ty may as well be Crazy Horse jamming with the Jeff Beck Group: Twins is rock’n’roll nirvana, and Nirvana-esque rock’n’roll — loud and catchy, fast and bulbous, jacked into the mainline SF psych scene circa Summer O’ Luv even as it pulls off a Pin Ups-quality homage to late ’60s Britrock, such as it was.

As is clear from the terrific profile of the young surfer from Laguna Beach, by way of Haight-Ashbury, Ty Segall doesn’t just have a future, the dude has caught his wave.  The jury at Tulip Frenzy has a big November crisis to face, and we don’t just mean where do we move if Mitt Romney wins?  The question we have to contend with is how many slots of the 2012 Tulip Frenzy Top Ten List will be taken up by albums on which Ty Segall plays?  Stay tuned.

One Response to “With “Twins,” Ty Segall Goes For The Triple Crown”

  1. […] thought was a little disjoint, a disappointment.  But in the fall, Segall came roaring back with “Twins,” an immensely fun return to solo status, Segall playing with just his imaginary friends in a band […]

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