DAMIEN JURADO (Dead Oceans) + JOHN VENDERSLICE (Secretly Canadian) *JOINT HEADLINE SHOW* with guest support HONOUR BEFORE GLORY
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
DAMIEN JURADO (Dead Oceans) + JOHN VENDERSLICE (Secretly Canadian)
*JOINT HEADLINE SHOW*
with guest support HONOUR BEFORE GLORY
@ Brudenell Social Club (Leeds)
TICKETS - £6 advance / £8 door
available now from JUMBO RECORDS, CRASH RECORDS, SEETICKETS, WEGOTTICKETS
Caught In the Trees marks the dawn of a new era for Damien Jurado. It may not be a huge departure from some of his past albums musically, but lyrically Jurado has taken a giant leap forward and there is no turning back. Best known for his dark yet fragile first person fictional tales, Jurado now unlocks the door and invites us into his own enigmatic world with an energy and intensity that is all-consuming.
Jurado took a full year to make this record, longer than ever before, as he ran away from and eventually found himself in his own songs. He subsequently found refuge in sharing the songs with his closest friends and bandmates, Eric Fisher and Jenna Conrad. Having walked alongside him through this most challenging journey, the songs that came out of it are as much theirs as his. Jurado, Fisher, and Conrad collaborated on the compositions - some much more rocking than Jurado fans are used to, but ever as intense - and pulled in producers Kory Kruckenberg and Casey Foubert to contribute their own unique stylings.
Recording started in the summer months and the sweltering heat, and wrapped in the freezing temps of winter. (It is clear on first listen that two distinct seasons are represented through Caught In the Trees - an accidental metaphor perhaps?) There was laughter and there was introspection, and the result is a record that Jurado loyalists will find was worth the wait. And perhaps a reason to listen for those who have yet to give this bedraggled storyteller a chance.
Damien Jurado will be performing solo at this show, an intimate treat indeed!!
The most noteworthy thing about John Vanderslice’s new album is this: Romanian Names is the best record he’s made to date. The 12 songs represent a career-defining moment, a pitch-perfect collection written and recorded with the utmost care and attention.
Vanderslice is certainly not the first artist to make such a leap several albums into a career – think Guided By Voices on Bee Thousand, Spoon’s Kill the Moonlight or Of Montreal’s Sunlandic Twins. Vanderslice's newest, his first for Dead Oceans, makes that step and separates itself from an already top-notch body of work.
The process of writing Romanian Names differed from that of prior Vanderslice albums. This time, he moved outside the normal (and by now maybe too comfortable) confines of his famed San Francisco recording studio, Tiny Telephone. He constructed a simple basement studio in his home and wrote and recorded the elemental demos for these songs alone with simply a guitar or piano to accompany his voice. The emphasis was placed on melody and structure, putting thoughts of instrumentation and studio wizardry on hold until there was a complete and stable foundation to build upon. The songs were given time to breathe, to be re-worked and reorganized, and sometimes enough time to be thrown out entirely. Benefiting from this organic and evolutionary process, Romanian Names coheres beautifully.
The album is subtle and lush, with a lyrical approach less concerned with narrative and cohesion than previous JV records, leading to a new tone that feels self-assured, natural, and unafraid. The results come in the way of killer sing-along choruses, memorable and punchy hooks, and knock-out atmospherics.
Honour Before Glory (me / I) is opening and their may be another act. I'm looking forward to it, cos those two guys are ace, and I'll be fresh from touring Germany, and it might be the last time I play these songs acoustically.
More info on what I've been up to: