Meadownoise is the pseudonym of Matt Glassmeyer, though he'd rather you not know that.
Since he started recording under that name, Glassmeyer--a veteran of many collectives--set his mind to writing, recording, and, at least initially, playing music as a wholly solo endeavor, though it was never an exercise in ego. Following his debut LP It’s 4:00 (2013) and it’s serialized follow-up, Dark Digest (2014), Glassmeyer would don a beige suit and tie for live performance, both as a show of church-like respect to anyone who cared to show up in person, and as an admission that he's just another ordinary person playing music. Hiding in front of the band, Glassmeyer subconsciously asked the viewer to pay attention to the music not the man. Regardless of interactive stage sculptures and unorthodox instrumentation, it could have been anyone in a suit banging away at a Wurlitzer.
With Threeve, coming six long years after Dark Digest, Meadownoise takes another step into the ambiguous. Glassmeyer's vocals, once clear as a bell, spoken or sung, now waiver between optimistic falsetto and the distorted and slurred, transforming the narrator into an unrecognizable everyman, not a specific personality. The album brims with openly strange explorations of warbled sounds and fleeting vocal observations culled from surreal anecdotes, clarinets large and small, a worn Dr. Sample, invented horns and percussion, tubas (yes, plural), and the bizarre Hammond x77. Manipulated found sounds and chirping synths are interwoven with brass choirs and polyphonous stacks of Glassmeyer’s vocals.
Despite Glassmeyer’s reticence towards exhibitionist creativity, Threeve is profoundly local and deeply personal. It’s a Nashville record, through-and-through, but not in the “three chords and the truth” sense. Glassmeyer’s lyrics are of Nashville’s streets and shortcuts, waiting rooms and living rooms. "American Food" is the memory of Mill Creek, where local kids spun the algae bloom water as radioactivity. "For Zero Donelson'' is inspired by a 1980s youth spent in the titular Nashville suburb, where neighborhoods were an open map--no consequences for a child’s unsupervised exploration. "Sugar `73" is an ode to his wife's lovely granny and her husband, Sugar, as they crowd around an alien home cassette recorder at Christmas.
Further setting Threeve apart from its predecessors is the fact that it is at least partially a collaboration. Glassmeyer started welcoming friends into his live shows early on, but his recordings had remained steadfastly a slow solo trek. With Threeve, though, some of those same folks have made an appearance on record. Adam Bednarik, who played in Coupler and Hands Off Cuba with Glassmeyer, tracked and produced the lead single “Cliff House Kids.” Multi-instrumentalist and long-time collaborator Winston Harrison (aka Veinmelter), and Seth West and Tye Bellar of synth-wave maximalists Financier, co-produced and composed two of Threeve’s standout tracks, “Feral Fruits” and “The Wired Remote,” respectively. Adult Swim sound designer, Shawn Coleman, (credited as Hamilton Sinclair) adventurously remixed “Cleaner, Clearer, More Concise” for the LP, and Coupler’s Ryan Norris, Glassmeyer's former Lambchop bandmate, deconstructed “Cliff House Kids” for that track’s EP release.
Threeve is brimming with personal anecdotes and nostalgic callbacks for Glassmeyer, but the listener is invited to transform these compositions into their own. The creator's stories are meant to remain tantamount to the recipient's involvement.