Though the gimmick behind an artist’s notoriety can earn a lot of coverage, the content behind that gimmick has to have something worthwhile to it as well. With the music of Robert Pollard, the noticeable element is his sheer prolificness; the man currently has 2,475 songs registered with BMI. Though no one would say his songs are equally good, the merit comes from his willingness to leap onto each new thought and work it through an entire track. Here are some examples of the recent fruitful period of Robert Pollard under the band name Guided by Voices.
“5º On the Inside”
Though the original members of Guided by Voices reunited in 2012, they disbanded again in 2014 after releasing six albums. Regaining control of the group as he did in the early 2000s, Pollard’s 2016 reformation of the band positions him as the only necessary element, writing the majority of the songs, in one case, recording all the instruments.
Even on albums with 32 tracks like August By Cake (said to be Pollard’s 100th album) and Zeppelin Over China, Guided by Voices never seem to run out of steam. The early albums of this period from 2016 to the present have produced some new directions that are not always successful, but their specialty is rollicking indie rock songs.
The creative spark for Robert Pollard never seems to go away, with anthemic sing-alongs employed even boundlessly exploring the corners of his mind. “Math Rock” is one example of Pollard taking the group into uncharted territory with the addition of toy instruments and a children’s choir.
“In Calculus Strategem”
The melodic elements often associate Pollard’s influences with power-pop, but “In Calculus Strategem” demonstrates that he is purely a singer-songwriter at heart. One can imagine Pollard writing this track alone at the height of the 2020 quarantine before emailing it to his bandmates.
“The Batman Sees the Ball”
Those who love rock music should thoroughly entertain themselves in the search through Pollard’s unstoppable musical expeditions. Any of the 13 albums released since 2016 would be a great place to start, but the albums featured on this list are the most ideal.
Pollard is not stopping anytime soon, releasing excellent albums to this day with Earth Man Blues and It's Not Them. It Couldn't Be Them. It Is Them! coming out in 2021. Appreciators of lo-fi indie rock to modern rock will not be disappointed.