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- Posted on Sep 9th 2009 4:00PM by Jason S Lipshutz
Pearl plans to shake up perceptions with 'Break It Up,' her solo debut out Oct. 6 on Univeral/Ecstatic Peace. A collection of pulse-pounding guitar-rock, the album recalls the tenacious sound of BYOP's two full-lengths while further showcasing Pearl's melodic snarl.
Following the band's split in August 2008, Pearl and drummer John Eatherly began co-writing new songs and working with producer John Agnello (Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr.), who they met through Sonic Youth frontman and Ecstatic Peace label head Thurston Moore. Recorded in Hoboken, N.J. over two months, 'Break It Up' features vocals from Pearl while Eatherly played nearly every instrument, including guitar, bass, drums and keyboard.
'Break It Up' carries the gloriously reckless attitude of her previous work, yet songs like the driving opener 'Heartbeats' and the mid-tempo 'Retrograde' display a leap forward in song arrangement and layering, which Pearl credits to working with Agnello. "We didn't want to have a complete 180-degree turn. It's still the same two people involved, but people can hear us growing up," she says.
The album's impressive set of collaborators include TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek and Iggy Pop, who contributes vocals to lead single 'I Hate People.' Pearl says that working with Pop on the track, which is currently streaming on her MySpace page, was "beyond my wildest dreams."
Following the album release, Pearl kicks off a month-long tour across North America with indie-pop group Islands, starting Oct. 15 in Chicago. Although it took time to translate the new songs into a live format, Pearl now has a full touring band -- Maxwell Peebles on rhythm guitar, Ben Pearson on bass, Erik Ratensperger on drums and Eatherly on lead guitar -- and is ready to continue raising hell onstage. "Things will be really fun and energetic. It's totally different now, but I love being back on stage," she says. "We'll hopefully be touring for a long time."
As for her upcoming recording plans, Pearl says that she and Eatherly are consistently writing new material and plan to continue their prolific collaboration for the long term. 'Break It Up' is her last record under her deal with Universal, so Pearl is keeping the door open for future possibilities. "It will be interesting to see where I go from here," she says.