Else Another Light Might Go Out is the fifth album from Saeta, painstakingly recorded and mixed by longtime collaborator Kramer (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi, Palace Brothers, Low).
Saeta features Matt Menovcik on vocals, guitar, and accordion, and Lesli Wood on vocals and piano. With Bob Smolenski on cello, they have created a lush collection of songs for Else Another Light Might Go Out, an hypnotic meditation on paradox and terror steeped in a lovely yet uncanny sense of Other.
Wood (also in Ms. Led) left Detroit for Seattle in 1997 and Menovcik (also in Rope, Inc.) came out a year later. With a name based on a quote from the liner notes for Miles Davis' Sketches of Spain they founded Saeta: "His performance here captures the essence of the saeta - the heart pierced by grief."
Saeta's first album Burn was mixed by Carl Hultgren from spacerockers Windy and Carl. This debut caught the attention of legendary underground experimental-pop producer and performer Kramer, who produced their next two albums, Structure In The Void and Resign To Ideal. For Saeta's fourth album, We Are Waiting All For Hope, the band worked with Steve Albini.
Saeta has toured North America and Europe and shared the stage with Low, Mark Kozelek, DeVotchKa, Damien Jurado, Hem, Rasputina, and The Church.
Else Another Light Go Out achingly explores seasoned songwriter Menovcik struggling with very real demons, regarding the painful end of a long-term relationship and other dark circumstances. To transform this pain, Menovcik grasped desperately to the aesthetics of hope, love, and beauty -- creating the songs for Saeta's most recent album. The title is both a reference to a John Steinbeck novel he was reading when things fell apart and a reflection on its meaning. This album is Matt's talisman as he emerged from that dark tunnel. He hopes that it is a source of light to others as well.
"I rolled on one hip and reached in my side pocket for my razor blades and I felt the lump. Then in wonder I remembered the caressing, stroking hands of the light-bearer. For a moment it resisted coming out of my wet pocket. Then in my hand it gathered every bit of light there was and seemed red – dark red. A surge of wave pushed me against the very back of the Place. And the tempo of the sea speeded up. I had to fight the water to get out, and I had to get out. I rolled and scrambled and splashed chest deep in the surf and the brisking waves pushed me against the old sea wall. I had to get back – had to return the talisman to its new owner. Else another light might go out."
--John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent