Started in 1992 in Los Angeles as a duo, through the mid nineties as a full band and then finally as a solo artist, the band IDAHO has become synonymous with Jeff Martin. He has been the sole thread through all of the incarnations. Known mostly for four-string guitars, low tempos, spectral feedback and nuance, IDAHO has never bowed to the pressures of being commercial. For their trouble He/they are the eternal underground band. By luck they’ve attracted a devoted, almost cult-like, following. Idaho is like the secret club of indie music, and for this record you’ll need the code words….
Jeff Martin , once again, goes it alone for this record save for some backing vocal by Eleni Mandell. His forays into TV and film scoring for the last 10 years have been nice but it was high time for a new Idaho effort to once again taint the ethers after a 5 year hiatus (« The Lone Gunman, 2005).
« You were a dick » was recorded at Jeff’s house in Laurel Canyon. His first short film “The Serpent and the Shadow” is currently playing in film festivals and lends some of it’s musical score to the new record. Jeff is making a yet to be titled feature length documentary that centers on Idaho’s European tour in ’02 .The documentary also visits many chapters of his musical life from childhood up to the present day taking full advantage of his extensive personal video and film library.
« His acoustic and custom four-string guitars’ unique tonal qualities assert themselves in subtle fashions, such as on a fuzzy instrumental “Impaler” (ah, classic mid ‘90s Idaho!), the more drums-centered “Up the Hill” and the up-tempo buzz of “The Space Between,” while several others like “Reminder” and “Someone to Relate To” are his sweetly sad piano meditations in the Neil Young “Soldier” mode—his low, trembling, sighing voice filling in the melodic movements. It’s music to accompany crossing the Mojave Desert, and outside of Wheat’s Medeiros and Husband & Wife’s Dark Dark Woods, no one else ever came close to Martin’s moist morning mood; and after so long gone, I’d forgotten how much I love it. »
Jack Rabids, The Big Takeover.
Initially released may 2001, “Levitate” is IDAHO’s sixth studio album. Jeff Martin composed and produced all of “Levitate’s” songs and played every instrument save drums.
Following the vinyl edition of “Hearts of Palm” late 2018, “Levitate” is set to be released for the very first time on vinyl via Talitres (July 17th, 2020). Limited edition, up to 1 000 copies, and remastered for vinyl from 20bit digital tapes by Bill Sanke. Original artwork revisited by Jonathan Schute (http://www.goaheadschute.com).
“Like the subtle beauty of Low with the pulse of Mark Kozelek minus the Drakian melodrama, Idaho drifts by with the understated intensity of a rock-inspired Spoon River Anthology.” Philadelphia City Paper
“It’s easy for sad-rockers to sound melancholy, but it’s hard to do it with as much elegance as Jeff Martin.” Pitchfork 8.3
IDAHO – ‘Levitate: A1. Wandering the Fields – A2. 20 Years – A3. For Granted – A4. On the Shore – A5. Carousel – B1. Come Back Home – B2. Orange – B3. Santa Claus is Weird – B4. Levitate