Whitmer Thomas shares a wistful video for “Most Likely,” the latest from his recently announced new album, The Older I Get The Funnier I Was, out October 21st on Hardly Art. The track features guest vocals from comedian Mitra Jouhari and Great Grandpa’s Al Menne.
“This song is about the constant shame I feel for my unshakable need to please everyone all the time,” says Thomas. “I’ll probably never know why I regret everything I did in a room the moment I walk out of it. I’ve spent way too much trying to figure out what events in the past led to me having a bad personality in the present. In the end I guess it’s a song about not knowing who in gods hell I am.”
Of the video Thomas says “I headed back home in an attempt to capture a flash of my childhood. We shot it at Pirate’s Cove on the outskirts of where I grew up. It’s one of the only places in my hometown that has stayed the same for my entire lifetime. They barely have credit card machines. It’s the best. I’d spend many summer days there, while my mom’s band would play, stealing dollars from her tip jar to buy some dip and dots ice cream. I never pulled the jet ski scheme but thought about it a lot. People get so drunk they’ll be there for 16 hours trying to sober up to drive back home. Plenty of time to let somebody take a spin on a jet ski you don’t own.”
The Older I Get the Funnier I Was, which follows Thomas’ brilliant 2020 HBO special The Golden One and his Can’t Believe You’re Happy Here EP released earlier this year, surveys a range of emotion and offers a broad sonic palette, moving between pop punk, electro, and the obvious influence of the singer-songwriters he grew up listening to in early childhood. It conjures the ennui of Bright Eyes alongside the barefaced storytelling of John Prine, the overstuffed lists of Fred Thomas with the lackadaisical humor of Colleen Green, among many others.
Thomas attributes the dexterity of the record to Duterte, who recorded and engineered most of it in addition to serving up plenty of encouragement when Thomas got down on the process. “As a comic, I used to test out new songs during sets to see if the funny bits were hitting, but since I wrote this in isolation I ended up writing lyrics and worrying less about making jokes,” Thomas says. That said, the album’s plenty funny. Stand-out and lead single “Rigamarole” opens with a Thomas-voiced infomercial that recalls his oft-cited lookalike Jim Carrey as the Grinch, before launching into a buoyant pop song about being depressed.
Photo Courtesy: Ariel Fish