Today, I bring to you an artist originally from where I currently reside now – Dallas, TX. However Joe Knight, the mastermind behind Rangers, relocated to San Francisco and as you can hear in Pan Am Stories that definitely makes sense. Not Not Fun writes that Joe Knight “grew up taking classical guitar lessons from a dude who claimed to have ‘toured with the Dead.'” “Zombies (Day)” blends lo-fi and psychedelia with a twist of shoegaze thrown in. “Bronze Casket” breaks out a more organic approach, with minimal use of effects pedals and synthesizer – a more “nude” and “chilled out” track if you will. “Zeke’s Dream” is a thirteen minute long lo-fi psychedelic jam filled with all kinds of noise and bass licks, and plenty of reverb and pre-delay slathered on to it. Unfortunately, there’s no full album stream on Spotify or anywhere as far as I know, however, there is a playlist on YouTube with all but one track which I’ll link to you right here. This album is two years old, but luckily Not Not Fun found 9 copies in their warehouse! I’ve linked the three songs I talked about below via Vimeo and YouTube so see what you think of them. Cheers!

The Details

Tape-warped phantom band Rangers finally unleashes the grainy, soaring, expansive prog-pop opus we always knew was floating inside the fretboard (and imagination) of multi-instrumentalist mystery maestro Joe Knight. The north Dallas-raised, San Fran-residing head Ranger grew up taking classical guitar lessons from a dude who claimed to have ‘toured with the Dead,’ and some of that brain-wonked jam agenda obviously seeped into the young Knight, who began recording his own loose, lo-fi jangle sprawls in 2005. But whereas last year’s critically lauded Suburban Tours LP found him condensing his cassette-crushed alien pop into 3 minute radio nuggets, Pan Am Stories uses the reverse strategy, letting each blurry strum pattern coast away and ride the breeze a bit before steering it into a fresh counter-melody or flanged-out guitar comedown. The extra breath and space gives the 13 songs a real sense of freedom and lightness and flight, layered in gentle blankets of fuzz, silky reverb, and audio collage riddles. A total saga, and a summit achievement of next-level invention for Knight as a musician (it’s insane he played/recorded every instrument on this thing!) and artist. Have been soaking in these tracks non-stop since we first heard ‘em this summer and are thrilled to get to share Stories with the world. Black vinyl LPs (mastered by Carl Saff, who worked on Suburban Tours too) in gatefold jackets with micro-detailed collage art by Mr. Rangers himself; interior artwork by Knight and Anthony Yuen. Edition of 850.

Price $18

Rangers - Zombies (Day) from Not Not Fun on Vimeo.

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