Jason Martin, singer-songwriter of indie rock institution Starflyer 59, tells NPR's Lars Gotrich that he's a "typical, middle-aged dude, I guess, that does band stuff on the side." After a two-decade-plus career spanning nearly every facet of guitar-based pop rock, Martin's distinguished outfit returns next week with new album Slow, now streaming at NPR's All Songs Considered.
We recently spoke to Martin in an exclusive interview regarding the album. Now, thanks to All Songs Considered, listeners are bestowed with a track-by-track guide to the work courtesy the unflagging frontman. Constructing Slow as a retrospective study of his life and musical milieu, Martin shared with NPR the wistful ache he explores in song:
"I'm kind of an oddly nostalgic person," Martin says. "I don't like change. It's looking back, looking at the last 20 years with my wife and the band, my kids, getting old and older. It's hard for me to grapple [with the fact] that I'm closer to 60 than I am 20, you know what I mean?"
Designating himself a "weekend warrior", Martin is the epitome of the American guitar-slinging workingman. Trucking across Southern California for a living -- an occupation he inherited from his father -- the dichotomy of his workaday existence and creative outlet has informed his material as far back as the matter-of-factly titled "I Drive a Lot" from 1998's The Fashion Focus. He recently addressed his tireless musical journey to music blog Spirit You All:
"It's just kind of an escape, and it's kind of the last vestige of what I liked doing as a kid -- or 18, 20, whatever you want to call that. Every time I say I'm not gonna make a record because I'm working or doing 43-year-old dad stuff, or you-name-it, I just like the idea of being in a room and playing guitar and putting chords together."
Slow is Starflyer's 14th full-length record, and is their first release with longtime label Tooth & Nail Records since their 2010 album, The Changing of the Guard. The band self-released their last effort, 2013's IAMACEO, via Martin's own imprint, South Co. Records.
Slow comes out June 17.