Popular Uprisings

Billboard, November 13, 1999
by Carla Hay

HE MIGHT BE JOHN: John Linnell is one-half of the critically acclaimed modern rock duo They Might Be Giants, and he makes his solo debut with the album "State Songs" on Zoe Records.

Linnell, who is still a member of They Might Be Giants, named 15 of the album's tracks after U.S. states. The music makes frequent use of a band organ. Linnell explains, "I had the idea that I could substitute the carousel organ for the usual human rock musicians on some of the numbers I cooked up. I managed to record four of the songs on my album using the sounds of two band organs, later overdubbing vocals and, in one case, more contemporary sounds. The results in some cases were pretty different from what I was expecting, but now that the record is finished, I'm glad I went through with it."

Linnell has embarked on a tour of select U.S. cities to promote the album. Upcoming appearances include Nov. 14 in Piermont, N.Y.; Nov. 20 and Nov. 22 in Los Angeles; Nov. 23 in San Francisco; Dec. 7-8 in Chicago; Dec. 10 in Boston; and Dec. 11 in New York.