Ty Segall “Manipulator” Review


Manipulator by Ty Segall Copyright 2014 Drag City Records

by Dylan Kennedy, Staff Writer

Since starting his career in 2008, California’s garage rocker Ty Segall has put out 7 studio albums under his own name, over 17 albums under various guises or with other bands, countless singles and an abundance of EPs, which typically contain more music than a single, but not enough to be considered a full studio album.

It is safe to say that one could easily become overwhelmed with all the music that Segall creates.

If you dive into an artist who already has all of this under his belt it might be a bit intimidating, but Segall may have just released the perfect place to start.

Manipulator, Ty Segall’s latest album, brings together all of the ideas that were shown in each of his other albums to create diverse sounds within one record rather than splitting different styles into different records. Manipulator combines the garage rock that Segall is known for from 2010’s Melted and 2011’s Goodbye Bread, in addition to the psych-punk of 2012’s Twins, and the soft acoustic sounds of 2013’s Sleeper to form his most impressive record yet.

Manipulator was recorded during 14 months which, for garage rock music, is an eternity. This eternity of recording, however, completely pays off with Segall’s astonishingly clear sounding record, and most clearly thought out as well.

“The songs of Manipulator represent a perfect melting pot synthesis of Segall’s many sonic signatures,” Stuart Berman of Pitchfork explains, “as if each component was carefully measured out in beakers and test tubes before being mixed together.”

Manipulator is a “grab bag” of sorts, but flows together as Segall’s ideas are confident and incredibly deliberate. From the title track’s descending organ riff and overlapping guitar, to the fuzz filled chaos of “The Crawler,” to the 70’s-esque guitar riffs of “Feel.” to the soft Beatles-like conclusion “Stick Around,” Manipulator carries a plethora of different music styles smoothly throughout one record.

Ty Segall has reached a point where all of his different musical concepts can cross paths in perfect harmony, making Manipulator a perfect jumping point for anyone trying to get into his music.

Essential tracks include: “The Singer,” “The Crawler,” and “Tall Man Skinny Lady.”