The Complete Epilogues CD: Recently only available at live performances, now here in our store. All 5 Epilogue tracks PLUS 8 more songs from the recording sessions for Neon Mirage, PLUS 2 LIVE tracks. 15 tracks in all. Ridgway says , " This CD is really like a part of Neon Mirage, and an important part too. Thanks a lot folks. ". Featured players: Pietra Wexstun (keys & vocals). Rick King (guitars), Bruce Zelesnik (drums), Amy Farris ( viola & violin), Ralph Carney (saxophones, woodwinds). Fantastic !
"Does a songwriter chase his muse – or is it the other way ‘round? That’s but one of the intriguing notions at the heart of Stan Ridgway’s 2010 release, Neon Mirage, arguably the most refined, yet musically eclectic collection of the veteran L.A. singer-songwriter/Wall of Voodoo founder’s career. “You never really have a choice about the tone and subject matter of the records you make,” Ridgway confides. “At least I don’t. They’re obsessions, really. It’s about the music, and how it heals the mind. There’s a weird old American jukebox in my head and it still plays everything that’s ever got under my skin.”
" Stan Ridgway is a brilliant iconoclast with a catalog as strong as that any more famous songwriter you’d care to name. Yet he’s best known for a new wave perennial that borders on novelty. “Mexican Radio,” the big hit from Ridgway’s old band Wall of Voodoo, may be undeniably entertaining, but at this point it’s only vaguely indicative of the work Ridgway has done on diverse, terrific solo records like The Big Heat (which spawned a couple of British hit singles), Black Diamond, Partyball and Mosquitos. There are uglier albatrosses to carry around (cf. the Who and “Squeezebox”), but one could argue that the song has stamped Ridgway as a one-hit wonder, at least in his home country, and that’s mighty unfair.
"Especially when the man has a record as strong as Neon Mirage in the offing. A song cycle inspired as much by loss as by living, Neon Mirage strips his signature sound down to the bare essentials, while still remaining as eclectic as always. Almost completely devoid of the electronic flourishes which have been such a staple of his work, the songs instead lean heavily on the folk direction in which he’s taken his live shows in the past few years. There’s a reason for the sparse backdrops – while Ridgway revisits familiar themes in tunes like the audio noirs “Scavenger Hunt” and “Turn a Blind Eye,” the military critique “Flag Up On a Pole,” the scenic instrumental title track and the character tribute “Lenny Bruce” (by Bob Dylan, with a lovely violin solo from the late Amy Farris) most of these tunes swim in more thoughtful, reflective waters. A series of deaths surrounding the making of the album contribute to the wistful, melancholy tone of “Behind the Mask” and “Big Green Tree” (a Black Diamond cut recast here as a spare, gorgeous ballad produced by Dave Alvin). “Like a Wanderin’ Star” sounds like Nashville country kitsch, but its Owen Bradley-influenced production suits the contemplative reminiscence of lost loved ones. Ridgway ponders his own mortality in “Halfway There,” inspired by his recent losses but not paralyzed by them. The cautious optimism of “Day Up in the Sun” ends the record on an appropriately sardonic note. "
"Thoughtful and mature, Neon Mirage nevertheless avoids complete austerity with a rich palette of colors, provided by his keyboardist wife Pietra Wextun, longtime guitarist Rick King, woodwind maestro Ralph Carney, Farris or his own signature harmonica. Yet, as never before, every sound in the grooves serves the songs. The tunes in turn act as windows into Ridgway’s soul, a view he’s rarely offered before – even if the curtains aren’t all the way open and the panes could use a cleaning. With voyages into territories old and new, Neon Mirage is one of the best albums in Ridgway’s long, auspicious career. " - The Big Takeover