From the gentle, opening burbles of “You’ll Be Fiiinnne” to the scratchy, contorted feedback closing out “Poor Daniel,” Mary Lattimore‘s debut effort is a mesmerizing three-track recording of meditative, reflective compositions. Lattimore’s previous works with Kurt Vile, Thurston Moore and Meg Baird have garnered acclaim for her intricate harp playing , as has her experimental collaboration with Arc in Round’s Jeff Zeigler (check out their 30 minute improvisational set for Folkadelphia here). Titled The Withdrawing Room and inspired by art, friends and photographs, the new record will be released on April 3rd through Desire Path Recordings. Stream an excerpt of the album below, hear the entire thing at Experimedia.
In exciting local music news, Kurt Vile announced further album details and a show at Union Transfer with Steve Gunn and Angel Olsen. Wakin On A Pretty Daze will be out via Matador Records on April 9th and will be a double LP (on blue vinyl!). The lead track, “Wakin On A Pretty Day,” is available as a free download on Matador’s website here – get ready for 9+ minutes of classic Vile-isms like “to be frank I’m fried / but I don’t mind.” Tickets and information for Kurt Vile & The Violators at Union Transfer on Saturday, May 18th, can be found here. Listen to “Wakin On A Pretty Day” below set to a video of images from this cover art documentary.
Local indie group Turning Violet Violet play Kung Fu Necktie tonight. The Key Studio Session alums carve out chamber alt-rock songs on the fringe of art-rock that seem bathed in a purple glow, though that might just be residual effects of their band name. Either way, the songs on Turning Violet Violet’s debut full-length Double Cure are swathe-y, sweeping compositions that strike all the right feelings chords. Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show with TeamMate and Donora can be found here. Revisit Turning Violet Violet’s Key Session here and watch their video for “Cold Bread” below.
Happy Valentine’s Day from Helen Leicht – get free downloads of Philly Local love songs [link]
Mary Lattimore, the Philadelphia harpist, has performed and/or recorded with Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore, Daughn Gibson, Meg Baird, Tall Firs, Kurt Vile, Nightlands, and many others. (From March 25-31, she’ll be one of the two harpists performing as part of Nick Cave’s HEARD•NY at Grand Central Terminal). And her debut solo album, The Withdrawing Room, will be released in late March by the Desire Path label. Lattimore has recently been performing in duo with Arc In Round’s Jeff Zeigler (electronics/synthesizer), including a gorgeous 34 minute improvisation at one of our recent Folkadephia Sessions. Zeigler makes a few appearances on The Withdrawing Room, and the duo’s next concert is this Thursday at Kung Fu Necktie.
“Just like on the album,” says Lattimore, “when Jeff and I play live, it’s all improvised. I’ve been trying out a starting-point, a basic melody, but it takes different turns and changes into something different each time. I am still experimenting with ways of sustaining, and want to get more pedals to play through. Right now, I just use my Line 6 green looper and by repeating notes really fast through the effects, it can create a sort of wall of glitter where you can’t really hear the attack, which I like. Right now, I’m preferring more of a hazy and dark sound, or a wash of color, rather than a sharp, clear harp, stringy pluck.”
In preparation for Thursday’s show, and her debut album, we asked Lattimore to tell us about some of the things that influenced The Withdrawing Room. Continue reading
We all like to practice what we preach, right? I’m always talking about the limited meaning and importance of genre classifications in the modern age of musical omnipresence; no one would really bat an eyelash at a concert bill consisting of a country twanger and an avant-garde synthstrumentalist (I just invented that word, “synth” + “instrumentalist”). Reason being is that our minds have been collectively expanded by the shear amount of diversity in music that we listen to on a regular basis primarily thanks to the Internet. We don’t live in 1913 and we’re not about to riot about The Rite of Spring premiere. We take musical mash-ups and oddities in stride. Just the other day, I saw a video in which Justin Timberlake played bass with the Flaming Lips. That’s not even entirely that weird. I’ve heard that diversity is the spice of life and I’m inclined to agree.
And now our weekly Folkadelphia Session! This week features two prominent music heads in the Philadelphia scene- Mary Lattimore and Jeff Zeigler. I know (and you definitely have heard/seen) Mary from performing harp with the likes of Meg Baird, Kurt Vile, Thurston Moore, and many others. I know (and you definitely have heard/seen) Jeff from either performing in Arc In Round or Relay, or from hearing a record he’s worked on with The War On Drugs, Ape School, and about a ton more. In any case, the two linked up and have of late been performing as an improvisational duo around town. As you’ll soon hear, this is not folk music, or, if it is folk music, it is of the extraterrestrial variety. Perhaps protest music from the icy moons of Jupiter. But like I mentioned, I like to get on my soapbox and shout about what I consider great or intriguing or unique, regardless of traditional “folk” qualifiers. I think you’ll find that that the ebb and flow of this session is like a dream you will not want to wake up from. Let’s just stop talking and drift away…
This coming week on Thursday, February 14th, Mary Lattimore performs at Kung Fu Necktie with Trummors, Fred Thomas, and Morning River Band (a diverse line-up that validates what I said before!) Hint, hint- a cool Valentine’s Day option!
The Archer Spade Performance Series returns this month with performances by Mary Lattimore / Jeff Zeigler Duo and Adam Caine at Studio 34. Conceived by local composers and musicians Dan Blacksberg and Nick Millevoi (collectively known as Archer Spade), the Performance Series is a monthly occurance that brings avant-garde, improvisational and experimental musicians to Philadelphia. January 19th will see Philadelphia’s harpist-in-residence Mary Lattimore (Thurston Moore, Kurt Vile) collaborate with producer and musician Jeff Zeigler (Uniform Recording, Arc in Round) in anticipation of Lattimore’s solo record, set to be released in February. Opening up the night will be New York solo guitarist Adam Caine. More information for the all-ages evening can be found here. Watch Lattimore and Zeigler perform at August’s Kensington Picnic below, then check out the Archer Spade Performance Series line-up as scheduled so far.