Having recently signed a solo deal with Merge that will be inaugurated with the Jan. 26 release of "From a Compound Eye," former Guided By Voices frontman Robert Pollard has already recorded its follow-up, tentatively dubbed "Normal Happiness." That set is expected in October.
"I have actually fulfilled my contract with Merge already," Pollard tells Billboard.com with a laugh from his Dayton, Ohio, home base. Actually, the 26-track "From a Compound Eye" has been finished since 2004, and while assembling music earlier this year for the Steven Soderbergh film "Bubble," Pollard got the itch to record the songs Soderbergh didn't opt to include.
"It's a pop album," Pollard says of "Normal Happiness." "It has 16 two-minute pop songs. I wanted to make a record like that." One track confirmed to appear is a newly fleshed out version of "Boxing About," which appeared as an instrumental on the recent "Bubble" EP.
...[Pollard] plans to hit the road a little less hard than in GBV's heyday, predicting that he will "stick to the states and just hit the big cities. It will be more of an every other weekend thing, like three shows, for probably three months or so, to make it as painless as possible."
... Pollard will be on hand for three book signings next week in Dayton, Chicago and New York to celebrate the release of the GBV biography "A Brief History -- Twenty-one Years of Hunting Accidents in the Forests of Rock and Roll," released this week by Grove/Atlantic. A DVD of GBV's final show, "The Electrifying Conclusion," is due Nov. 15 via Plexfilm.
While I was pasting this link and article into my blog, Pollard wrote and recorded a double album and finished up the second volume of his three-volume work about the Cultural Revolution. While I typed that last sentence he recorded an EP that will be available in CD/DVD format and will feature cover art he painted himself.