Blake Mills is a man whose music aches with the cracks of age and heartbreak, and each song he composes is a reflection of being human. The fact that he terms love as a “Curable Disease” is not the affectation of a cynical punk who hates Hallmark cards, but his willingness to look into our haunted psyche. He may yet get the fame he richly deserves as a producer, a collaborator, an artist, but he is forever humble.
Mills speaks about how music comes naturally to him, but turning those melodies into a finished product with lyrics “is more of a hunt, there’s no guarantee of what day or what time it’s gonna come” though it may seem like a put-down, it’s more obvious of the intent and passion Mills puts into his work, he wants his melodies to have an equal match in the meaning of the words, and for that we’re all the more grateful.
You can still find his 2010 debut Break Mirrors on:
Have to give a shout out to Matt Carr from Everybody Taste for pointing me in the direction of this gem of an eponymous debut The Poison Tree. The Poison Tree is the alias of songwriter Steve Salett, who won’t exactly be on the tip of anyone’s tongue, but this album is pure gold, and my sleeper hit of 2011. I’m a sucker for an album with immaculate production, and just try to listen to songs like “Come On, Come On” or “My Only Friend” without being sucked into their respective worlds. And yes, for you hyper-literates out there, the name of the band (and the album) does come from the William Blake poem.
Check out this gorgeous interpretation of “My Only Friend” which has been synched up with the Orson Welles classic, Touch of Evil and check out both “My Only Friend” and “Come On, Come On” below.