Song Of The Day: Songs:Ohia, “Travels In Constants”

In 2001, Songs:Ohia mastermind Jason Molina contributed his music to two subscription–only projects; Absalom Recordings‘ short-lived and controversial 3″ CD series, and Temporary Residence’s Travels In Constants series, of which Molina’s was Volume 14. Both pieces were noted for being long, dark, epic explorations of both sound and lyric; the Absalom Recordings number, “Howler,” was a rough sketch written on keyboard and drum machine, and is largely forgettable.”Travels in Constants,” however, is another story. At nearly 18 minutes, Molina stretches himself out on acoustic guitar in a way he never did elsewhere; his guitar playing is impeccable, not unlike John Fahey or Jack Rose, while his lyrical prowess is a cosmic, abstract psychedelic ramble that has a tendency to fade in and disappear into the background. It’s easy to lose yourself in the gorgeous guitar picking and not even notice he is singing. Long obscure and highly sought-after, this Temporary Residence reissue reintroduces based on a work of art many of Molina’s fans might never have heard before.

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