released: 2019-06-07 )
As far as we know, Tim Heidecker remains a happily married man with two delightful children. But we wouldn't blame you if you hear his latest collection of songs, What The Brokenhearted Do..., and worry for the fella. To be honest, we've checked in on him a couple times just to be sure. Recalling Neil Young, George Harrison, Harry Nilsson and Warren Zevon (sometimes all at once), these songs find a completely shattered man crawling through the sewage pipe of divorce. Take, for example, the over-the-top Crazy Horse squall in the finale of "Finally Getting Over." Again and again, Heidecker howls "I'm finally gettin' over loving you," but it's all too clear the opposite is true. He's not fooling anyone but himself. This poor soul isn't getting anywhere good any time soon.
For the last three years, Heidecker has been waging a hellish war upon the current presidential administration and its shady minions. Whether because of his unrelenting Twitter prodding of Trump, his spot-on impersonation of Info War's Alex Jones or his well of caustic Trump protest songs, Heidecker has found himself in the crosshairs of the Online alt-right community. At some point, one of those Incel or QAnon trolls started a vicious rumor that Tim's wife had, in fact, left him, and the rumor caught fire across certain social channels. Instead of getting pissed off, our protagonist (antagonist?) Tim Heidecker got inspired. He knows full well that here in the music biz, nothing breeds good tunes like utter heartbreak. When an artist's relationship crumbles, we label suits just rub our greedy little mitts together. From Blood on the Tracks to Shoot Out The Lights, it's a near-universal truth: Divorce is a hit factory. So he imagined himself an awful divorce and let the hits flow.
Working with producer Jonathan Rado (Father John Misty, Whitney, Weyes Blood), Heidecker has delivered his most accomplished album to date. In addition to being absolutely gutting, the soulful "I'm Not Good Enough" is a masterclass in less-is-more songwriting, a soulful dirge brushing confidently against a big, "Hey Jude" melody before gently coming to a startling close. and leaving you wanting more. It beckons you over to the turntable to reset the needle. The jaunty, Nilsson-nodding live favorite "When I Get Up" is perhaps one of the most joyful tunes about crushing depression we've heard ever put to tape. For a song about succumbing to the void in your bedridden funk, it's got a lot of pep in its step. The closing piano ballad "Life's Too Long," is as close to much of a resolution as Heidecker will give us. "Life's too long to stay in love," he croons, a mournful organ the song's only accouterment. Enjoy the bittersweet moment and be thankful that Heidecker wraps up What The Brokenhearted Do... as he does, because the next chapter for this divorcee is probably a midlife crisis full of neck tattoos and sports car debt. ʇ