Release Date: Aug 27, 2013
Record label: Record Collection Music
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Lo-Fi
The name John Frusciante, to most music fans means one thing: The Red Hot Chili Peppers. As their enigmatic guitarist and songwriter, Frusciante strummed and licked the band through their most commercially successful years. One might expect his solo material to be a continuation of the funk he used to play, but listening to his most recent release, Outsides EP, it appears that Frusciante may have been the driving force behind the Peppers’ style into a more diverse musical tapestry.
Anyone following the warped path of John Frusciante's solo music can tell you that all bets are off when trying to determine its motivations, process, or intent. Since the mid-'90s, the recordings Frusciante made while moonlighting from his main gig as guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers have always been obtuse, confusing affairs, ranging from early dazed singer/songwriter outsider sounds to a series of EPs and mini-albums in the early 2010s that incorporated twisted electronic elements into their sliced-and-diced take on pop tracks. Outsides, yet another EP in line with its predecessors, takes another odd turn, offering just three almost completely instrumental tracks, each harder to pin down than the last.
When the Red Hot Chili Peppers were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April of 2012, guitarist John Frusciante was discernibly absent. By that time, Frusciante had only been away from the band for three years, but his personal aesthetic had been waning from the band’s since his 2001 solo effort, To Record Only Water for Ten Days. Following the 2010 acid-house freakout alongside Aaron Funk and Chris McDonald dubbed Speed Dealer Moms and amidst finalizing the electro-jazz soundscapes of 2012’s PBX Funicular Intaglio Zone, Frusciante was making giant, calculated leaps away from his earlier fame-generating project.
When it comes to the work of former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante, it's best to push one's expectations aside. The mercurial 43-year-old has been following his own disturbed muse since he joined the aforementioned funk rockers back in 1988. It's only through his solo work, though, that Frusciante has allowed his unhinged vision of the musical world to come to the fore, whether that be in stream-of-consciousness rambles (see 1994's Niadra Lades And Usually Just A T-Shirt) or angular synth-pop (2001's To Record Only Water For Ten Days).