(Guided By Voices circa 2004. Photo: Jeremy Balderson)
Back in print for the first time in over 10 years, Guided By Voices’ limited red vinyl reissue of Half Smiles of the Decomposed is available today.
“At the time of it’s 2004 release, ‘Half Smiles Of The Decomposed’ was meant to be Guided By Voices’ final album. As it turns out, Bob Pollard’s a better revisionist historian than the rest of us combined — it merely turned out to be the pause button being pressed on that particular incarnation of GBV, though given Doug Gillard’s contribution, one could argue this one sits pretty neatly alongside much of the 2010’s output. People will tell you “Girls Of Wild Strawberries” was the hit and since I’m not inclined to look up old CMJ charts (wasn’t very inclined in 2004, either) we can either presume that’s accurate or simply skip ahead to “Closets Of Henry”, which somehow didn’t make the greatest hits, ‘Human Amusements At Hourly Rates’ (sticklers for detail will claim that’s because the comp. came out in 2003, but just to put the subject to bed, let’s just say it was record company negligence).
After this, it would be another 8 years for a Guided By Voices studio album (and there were three of ‘em in 2012, OF COURSE).”
– Gerard Cosloy