Jonathan Patrick – Open Heart EP
Strange Mono is announcing the release of Jonathan Patrick’s “Open Heart”. Playing with various punk and garage rock bands over the years, this EP is Jon’s first outing with his solo guitar work. “Open Heart” showcases a genuine, natural, melodic intuition that is rare in today’s musical landscape.
Jonathan, an experimental guitarist from Eugene, Oregon, describes his style as “founded in the navigation of impermanence”. Comparisons can be made to the 60’s and 70’s American Primitive movement out of California, yet Jon’s work is a singular and unique take on the genre. Embracing the freedom of play pioneered by American roots music, Jon embraces life’s transitional nature in his compositions, displaying an emotional urgency that adds something fresh to a genre primarily dominated by technicality.
Inheriting an Alvarez classical guitar at the age of 12 from his mom, Jon always sought to convey the same feeling with one guitar that one gets from listening to early Sonic Youth. In 2005 living in San Francisco, Jon saw the original Akron/Family lineup perform their own material as well as back up Michael Gira as Angels of Light. “It was the first time I saw anyone convey the same power and freedom as Sonic Youth with acoustic and hollow body guitars”, Jon recalls. That performance set the course for Jon to spend years woodshedding behind the scenes while playing in numerous bands eventually culminating in the ultra jammy United Waves. After a couple of limited releases on acetate, everyone moved on and Jon became obsessed with minimalist art and solo guitar music.
“Open Heart”, made up of two tracks, is a direct and bittersweet pastiche of the Pacific Northwest, channeling visions of fog drenched mountain ranges and waves dashing against rocky outcrops on the shoreline. The opening track “Found Work Blues” was written prior to the worldwide fallout of the pandemic and is a reconciliation with the compromise all of us make in order to get by…and is also meant to be a post-work drinking song. The closing track “Dirty Side Of The Storm” was recorded after the end of the US shutdowns and will resonate with those who grew up in hurricane country as well as anyone who has ever asked themselves, “When will this bullshit end?”. “Open Heart” serves as a documentation of a period that was incredibly hard on the entire world. As world events continue to be exploited and divisions sown by those who would benefit from it, we are all left with the choice to either numb ourselves out to accept the status quo or to do something. This is what Jon did and will be doing until the wheels fall off.
Proceeds from this release are being donated to the White Bird Clinic’s NEST program. NEST is designed to help adults experiencing homelessness navigate available resources and sign up to receive assistance.