VIDEO PREMIERE: JOEL JEROME “IT WILL FEEL GOOD TO DIE”
Longtime L.A. RECORD featuree Joel Jerome once fronted the mighty dios (malos) and then set himself up as one of L.A.’s premiere engineers: his Abbey Road West studio was the incubator for much-loved locals like Cherry Glazerr, the Buttertones and Froth. He’s never stopped writing and recording his own music, of course, and new single “It Will Feel Good To Die” finds him in fine (and philosophical) form. Besides the Radiohead influences discussed comprehensively below, there’s a powerful Neil Young connection at work, too—a bleakness that shifts into something maybe more hopeful, depending on how deeply you let yourself sink into the song. (That’s kind of how mantras work, isn’t it?) And anyone who’s run through all of David Crosby’s If I Could Only Remember My Name on a long night drive will also recognize the vibe here instantly: reflection born from isolation. Jerome explains the song and his homemade video:
“The song itself is actually one of my oldest songs, written while living in Berkeley California in 1998 during probably my most intensely prolific period to date. i worked 6 days a week 9:30 to 5:30 at Berkeley Bowl but found time almost every night beginning around 10 PM to write and record in my bedroom till around 3 AM. This song feels like it must’ve been inspired by OK Computer, possibly a combination of ‘Exit Music,’ ‘The Tourist,’ and the middle section of ‘Paranoid Android’ since I fell asleep nightly to that album during that period. I remember my initial demos were done with my first time singing into my roommates analog delay pedal and being completely taken by the eerie atmosphere it was helping to create. (Did not smoke pot yet!) The lyrics were just filler at first but i eventually kept them as is and used the lines more like a chant … maybe a mantra you would say to yourself in your final moments. The most memorable part of writing this song was trying my hardest to find and perform a cool two-part harmony for the intro and outro that really did the song justice and I’m pretty happy with the result.
The video was the first one I’ve done by myself and of course it stars my lovely Lenoramore bearded dragon. She’s just awesome to look at and I felt I wanted to do something simple based on the atmospheric vibey sound of the song and just get slow motion shots of my little girl in her most primal state while eating and being still, two things she constantly does. I wanted simple, classic, scenic shots that felt right with the tone of the song. I shot it in widescreen and color graded it to give the video a cinematic film-like look.”
“It Will Feel Good To Die” is out as part of Dangerbird’s Microdose series, and you can get it here. Jerome performs tonight at 8 pm—Fri., Oct. 18—at Dangerbird’s Sunset Blvd location—free if you RSVP here!