Posted June 17, 2020 by Jeff in Tunes

Lou Barlow’s ‘Emoh’ Issued on Vinyl for First Time

Lou Barlow photo: Eric Fermin Perez
Lou Barlow photo: Eric Fermin Perez

To mark the 15thanniversary of Lou Barlow’s Emoh, an album that Rolling Stone described as “full of quiet lyricism and Nick Drake beauty” upon its initial release, Merge Records will reissue the album as a double-LP in a gatefold jacket — it’ll mark the album’s first appearance on vinyl domestically, and the reissue will include a bonus digital download of eight rare demos from the era. 

Emoh was released in January 2005, within a day or two of my first child, Hannelore, being born,” says Barlow in a press release. “I put my real name on it, and it felt like the beginning of a new, more confident era. At the same time, I was asked to rejoin Dinosaur Jr, so, instead of spending the next year touring in support of Emoh, I started a Dinosaur Jr reunion that continues to this day. It was a bittersweet decision because my LP was warmly received and seemed to point to a self-reliant future.”

Though Emoh was a “positive step forward” for Barlow, he says that listening to it now, he realizes the songs clearly track the slow dissolution of his first marriage as well as “the fatal break of several partnerships and my struggle to acclimate to living in L.A.”

“That I was able to describe my decline in such detail then hand it out to friends and family members as my ‘comeback LP kind of amazes me now,” he says.   

Though there was a short run of LPs through Domino UK at the time, vinyl was all but dead in 2005 and this is the first time Emoh has been available domestically in that format.

Photo: Eric Fermin Perez


Jeff started writing about rock ’n’ roll some 20 years ago when he stood in the pouring rain to hitch hike his way to see R.E.M. on their Life’s Rich Pageant tour. Since that time, he's written for various daily newspapers, alt-weeklies, magazines and websites. Feel free to comment on his posts or suggest music, film and art to him at [email protected].