By AVA LIVERSIDGE
Alison Mosshart, a name previously heard in association with The Kills, Dead Weather, and, simply, Jack White, all key players in the resurgence of alt-rock, is now a force all on her own accord. Sound Wheel, Mosshart’s debut spoken word album is 47 tracks of pure poetry, pure punk.
Released on August 7, 2020, Sound Wheel is the companion album to Mosshart’s book of art entitled CAR MA, which sold in bookstores. Jack White’s Third Man Records and Third Man Books was set to release this pairing exclusively on vinyl and via in-store purchase in Detroit and Nashville but has just recently debuted online for the public. Sound Wheel’s records are also accompanied by an impressive number of self-produced videos to pair with ten different tracks.
Mosshart amazingly retains all of the Rock N Roll grit of her previous projects while transporting the listener on an automotive venture through the banalities of everyday America and her stream of consciousness that accompanies it. Sound Wheel ’s America fattens our own national identity as we tour behind the wheel and, occasionally, as the vehicle itself- a Pontiac, Buick, and Ford pickup, to name a few.
This ode to everyday life is sporadically interrupted by musical interludes which act to jolt the listener out of the hypnotizing lull of Mosshart’s day-in-a-life paralleled by her characteristically dreamlike tone.
Alison Mosshart – MIAMI
Musically, Mosshart offers backing tracks on several pieces are characteristic of the synthetics of early Pink Floyd heard on “Animals”, “Sonic States,” and her cadence, her voice, especially on the front-porch claps of “Acid Kills” and “Louisiana,” is, genuinely, the blues.
Though unconventional in fluidity, Sound Wheel ’s sequence of tracks is the perfect amount of messiness and incoherence to resemble a genuine human stream of thought, making the piece more of a gift- a window into the unique outlook of Alison Mosshart.
A trip through Los Angeles, Louisiana, Salt Lake City, Miami, Nashville, the Redwoods ignites the drabbest, the most mundane parts of the country ablaze in the hysterics and chaos the listener relies on Mosshart to bring to fruition. Mosshart has gifted us the romance and depth of the YMCA, cigarettes, Pontiacs, politics, and the deep South with reflective optimism many can only strive for. This is a manifesto, a response to national yearning to rev an engine and see suburbia via Mosshart’s shaded aviators.
Mosshart’s America is depicted here: The conflict, the rebellion, the liberation, and, eternally, the cars.
Alison Mosshart – Road Kill