Elliott Smith is back in the news this month with his former label, Kill Rock Stars, sharing another outtake from his self-titled record and the announcement of a new documentary from filmmaker Nickolas Rossi. As for the rarity, fans who missed the alternate version of “Needle in the Hay” back in 2012 (when it was available briefly in exchange for a newsletter subscription) can now hear the abandoned trumpet solo take on KRS’ new archival comp, Crazed MP3 Fans Volume 1. The released version came out in more sparse, despairing form back in 1995, while this one lightens the track’s mood a bit between the verses by tracing its central melody with brass and harmonica. It’s an intriguing look behind the curtain at Smith’s process of constructing and deconstructing his material, even when limited to just an old 4-track cassette recorder. Hear it above.
Meanwhile, Heaven Adores You, a Kickstarted documentary launched a few years back, has finally come to fruition. It’s original teaser trailer below didn’t offer much in the way of new footage or commentary, but rest assured the post-funded film now promises a slew of notable interviews. Among the list of Smith friends/family/collaborators are photographer Autumn de Wilde, producer Larry Crane, Sean Croghan, KRS founder Slim Moon, Largo’s Mark Flanagan, a rare appearance from Jon Brion, Shon “Goldenboy” Sullivan, Heatmiser’s Tony Lash, and Elliott’s sister Ashley Welch. In comparison to 2011’s Searching for Elliott Smith, this project is shaping up to be more in line with de Wilde’s essential 2007 book. Multiple festival premieres and screenings are scheduled for May.