Posted August 1, 2016 by portlandlive in Miscellaneous

Mourning A City That Has Moved On


This year sees Dietzel issuing his first solo release, Quadrants, featuring four new songs about a single city that has left the singer of tales behind.  Recorded and mixed by Victor Nash of the band Point Juncture, Washington in two days at Destination: Universe! with a carefully-curated but unrehearsed gang of studio musicians, these recordings capture the spontaneity that characterizes all great rock and roll performances in its superb, wildly diverse tunes that some have compared favorably to Oasis, Bruce Springsteen, the Cars, Wilco, The War on Drugs, Prince, and the theme song from Taxi. The first single from this instant classic, “Amsterdam”, is dedicated to Dietzel’s small but fiercely loyal cult following, many members of whom, although loathing Dietzel personally, cannot deny that his songs represent the very best of what rock and roll has to offer in 2016.

Though he maintains a low profile, Thomas Dietzel’s timeless rock and roll compositions are one possible antidote to a music industry increasingly dominated by style at the expense of substance.  Originally from Buffalo, New York, Dietzel went to high school in an isolated town in upstate New York. While exiled there, he became acquainted with his parents’ hoary 1976 copy of The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock and Roll. Ironically, this book, though as incomplete and biased an account of the subject of rock music as ever existed, was his sole source of information about it. He thus came of age and learned to play guitar without compromising his ignorance of punk, post-punk, disco, ska, glam, rap, Krautrock, funk, new wave, no wave, and other genres familiar to the upwardly mobile and sexually active. It was only much later that he became acquainted with them (the genres, that is), and by then, of course, it was too late. Dietzel’s songwriting skills thus evolved in a bubble made of classic rock, and although his songs display a bewildering variety of compelling melodies, hooks, and lyrics, they remain rooted in and part of the tradition of great rock and roll.

Over the course of the ten albums he’s released since 1993 with his bands Kindergarten, Shed Incorporated, and Last Prick Standing, Dietzel has proved himself to be a master of songcraft with few peers. Don’t laugh! Though often recorded under less than ideal conditions, some of the tracks on these records hold their own against the work of any other rock songwriter, living or dead.

Discorporate Tape Presents
Quadrants (DT008)
A New Release From
Thomas Dietzel
Available 5/12/2016
For interview requests, keepportlandlive at gmail dot com.




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