The Protection Spells is a collection of songs recorded over a period of several Songs: Ohia tours. Presented here are nine entirely improvised pieces. The approach to these songs involved no rehearsals, no second takes, no additions and no going back. What you have here are songs that just happened in real time. The many musicians on these recordings were friends, bandmates and, at times, total strangers. I have long hoped to offer the listener a chance to have some of these great accidents on record. It is a direct look at my songwriting process, only a little more risky, and nobody has any idea what direction we are going until we all start working on it together. I think that the years of improvised music I played in the past helped to strengthen the risk-taking with these songs. Here the the goal was to still have basic songs without falling into long freak-out noise experiments, saving that kind of exploration for live settings. You will notice the appearances and disappearances of ideas that could never be recreated, not that they are all brilliant, but they are certainly not forced. The seemingly arbitrary moments of strange repetition the lyrics, the clear lack of a preconceived system of established song parts, all are the marks of improvised songwriting. Since even the singing had no idea what the floorplan of the song was to be, there were some unanticipated troubles and some shy steps taken, but I have preserved these mappings of the dangerous musical byroads that Songs: Ohia has always depended on. I hope you enjoy this.- Jason Molina, July 10, 2000
Tour only compact disc. Music recorded on the road in Europe 1999. Out of print.