In celebration of Thrill Jockey's 25th anniversary Jeff Parker's 2005 album The Relatives returns to vinyl for the first time in over a decade. The album features Parker joined by percussionist Chad Taylor, bassist Chris Lopes, and pianist Sam Barsheshet. The LP comes pressed on virgin vinyl in an uncoated stock jacket with an accompanying download coupon.
Parker says that this session, originally waxed in January 2004 at SOMA and engineered by John McEntire, is "more 'song- oriented' than their previous album, and less of a jazz-oriented 'blowing date.'" It includes original compositions by Taylor ("Istanbul") and Lopes ("Sea Change," "Bean Stalk,""Toy Boat"). Parker's own compositional contributions include "Mannerisms" and "Rang (for Michael Zerang)." "The Relative" was composed by Parker and bassist Matthew Lux, with whom the guitarist worked in Isotope 217, the band for whom it was originally conceived. The album's one non-original is a gorgeous reworking of Marvin Gaye's "When Did You Stop Loving Me, When Did I Stop Loving You," on which Barsheshet shines particularly brightly.
Of the group and record's name, Parker returns to his Einsteinian explanation: "The Relatives refers to the notion of a community (in this instance a community of musicians) functioning much like a family does, and also the abstraction of Relativity, which implies that as one moves, one's perspective changes along with one's movements. Since we're always moving, we're always changing."