Nick Millevoi explores desolation in America with Desertion
Nick Millevoi | via Noisey

Resident experimental guitarist Nick Millevoi is back at it with Desertion, a record he released late last month. The six-track album marks Millevoi’s first solo effort since 2014’s Numbers on the Side, but don’t let that fool you – he’s been plenty busy. The last several months have been spent with Chris Forsyth’s Solar Motel band, which returned home from a tour just in time for Millevoi to head out with his own trio in support of Desertion this week.

He spoke with Noisey ahead of the tour (which started in Toronto before heading out to Chicago and circling back through Pittsburgh), where he discussed Neil Young’s influence, title references and his bandmates in the Desertion trio. Noisey asks if it’s a concept album since many of the song titles deal with abandoned and desolate places, to which Millevoi answers that there is a cohesion that pulls the tracks together though it’s not a “rock opera”. He then describes a fascinating place in Michigan that inspired “Disneyland in Hamtramck”:

The place is incredible, and I think this song is the most hopeful part of the record because I had this place in mind. Hamtramck Disneyland is a giant structure that this guy Dmytro Szylak built behind his house in Hamtramck, Michigan. It’s a completely outsider art creation that was inspired by his years of working in a factory. In order to see it you have to go down the alley behind a bunch of houses. I felt the vibe when I was there and was totally inspired by the place. Dmytro was working on it and he invited us in and we hung out for about an hour. He asked me to play for him on a guitar someone gave him so I played him Hank Williams’ “Cold Cold Heart” and we have a photo of it in my kitchen. He’s passed since and the place is up for sale now (or is sold?) and they’re not sure what’s going to happen.

Listen to Desertion via Bandcamp below, and if you’re in one of the following places be sure to check out the trio live.

June 13th – Columbus, OH – The Summit
June 14th – Pittsburgh, PA – City of Asylum

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