Ariel Pink was craving a cigarette. It was the first thing he asked for one recent morning when he arrived at my place to talk about his new album, "Pom Pom." I didn't have one, so a representative from his record label, 4AD, was dispatched to satisfy him.
While she was gone, Pink paced around the back porch with his iPhone and attempted to explain the virtual whirlwind he's experienced in the months leading to the release of "Pom Pom." It's his third studio album for the label and his debut minus his ever-evolving concern, Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti.
For the first time during the unveiling of an album, he said he'd been "plugged into the world of first impressions" of those reacting to his 17-song work. Filled with the artist's immediately identifiable lost-to-time pop songs, so strange and aggressively catchy, it's a singular work, an instant outre classic. Pink has been in a social media wormhole exploring the reactions of those who have heard it.