MARK MALLMAN’S NEW YEAR’S EVE IN 3D
There is a line between insanity and genius that Minneapolis musician Mark Mallman has built a career on. His solid songwriting, combined with a wild stage persona, has earned him opening spots on stages with artists as diverse as Green Day, Cat Power and Guided By Voices to name just a few. Mallman’s expansive catalog of infinitely catchy, masterfully orchestrated boot-stomping pop songs has rocked the airwaves of MTV, VH1, NPR, and dozens of major motion picture trailers and video games. Mallman has also been written about in Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Time Out New York, the L.A. Weekly, Chicago Sun-Times, Denver Post and so on. Additionally, he’s a featured contributor to the “Music Theory for Dummies” series alongside Bob Moog, John Cage and Andrew Bird and is a composer for film and television.
Despite this substantial and credible resume, Mallman has also been characterized throughout his career as a madman, though in actuality he’s a mad genius, increasingly known for the brilliant staging of his signature “Marathon” events. The most recent “Marathon” was launched at 10PM on October 10, 2010 (10/10/10!), and saw our hero performing a non-stop, non-sleep, 78-hour song with 576-pages of lyrics, all live from his hometown’s Turf Club in an endurance exercise much more akin to John Cage than David Blaine. Did the 110 musicians and over 25,000 people who tuned into the internet broadcast during its peak think the man nicknamed Mr. Serious was nuts? Hopefully.
Mallman will be doing little to dispute these charges, and may actually be cementing his radical reputation with a greater segment of the world this fall, when he launches his ground breaking “Marathon 4” event on September 15, 2012 to be followed on October 9 by the release of his new album, Double Silhouette, Mallman's darkest, yet catchiest, batch of songs yet. Double Silhouette is 11 tracks and 32 minutes of perfection, personifying Mallman’s complex musical approach and dark themes while still managing to showcase the seemingly effortless simplicity we all love from great pop songs. “This entire record is a personal diary of working through a break up,” Mallman explains. “I was watching my favorite movie, Casablanca, and Rick was just sitting there at the bar by himself. Here was this guy far from home, totally alone when his ex-girlfriend shows up with a new guy. I could totally relate. It’s a noir battlefield of car crashes and lightning strikes. It’s about being too sad for words.”
Double Silhouette was recorded at studios in Minneapolis, Los Angeles and in the basement of Mallman’s parent’s house in Waukesha, WI. Mallman claims sonic inspiration from John Lennon’s Double Fantasy and Walls and Bridges albums and from Brian Eno’s production style in the 1970’s. The last song Mallman wrote for this break-up album was “Dirty Dishes,” about which he confesses, “I knew she would eventually listen to this record, and as creative person, I have to take responsibility for the impact of my work. So, I wrote a tune that said ‘Hey, it was hard, but I hope we can still be friends. I suppose it’s my ‘Rolling In The Deep’ moment.” Hmm, maybe Mallman isn’t such a madman after all.
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