screams, whispers and songs from planet earth

Month: February 2013

Reason To Believe—The Songs of Tim Hardin

Tim Hardin performing at Woodstock in 1969

Tim Hardin performing at Woodstock in 1969

Tim Hardin once said “My songs aren’t personal. They sound it ‘cos it was me who revealed them, but it was my head that got the lightning shot through it.” It’s an eloquent way to describe the inspiration that guides truly great songwriters. James Timothy “Tim” Hardin (1941-1980) was a “musicians’ musician,” writing and performing songs that were deeply heartfelt and communicated soul to soul. It is sad that while he was alive, he never achieved the level of success as the many artists, classic and contemporay, whom he influenced—Johnny Cash, Rod Stewart, Scott Walker, Joan Baez, The Kingston Trio, Nico, Echo and the Bunnymen, Paul Weller, Leon Russell, Doc Watson, Robert Plant, Bob Seger, Marianne Faithfull…

There is now a new generation of musicians to carry Tim Hardin’s masterpieces into the future, bringing his vision back to life. Reason To Believe—The Songs of Tim Hardin is a celebration of Hardin’s music, performed by artists such as Smoke Fairies, Okkervil River, Mark Lanegan (Screaming Trees), The Phoenix Foundation, Diagrams and Hannah Peel. On this special collection, Hardin’s classic folk tunes are lovingly resurrected with each band’s unique creativity, modern sounds and sensibilities. The album’s artwork is by Miles Johnson at Third Man Records, with liner notes by Rock’s Backpages music critic and author Barney Hoskyns.

“I’ve always been haunted by the devastating voice and beautiful songs of Tim Hardin. I can’t imagine anyone hearing him and not feeling the same.” — Mark Lanegan

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Liars & Believers present… Lunar Labyrinth

Lunar Labyrinth
presented by Liars & Believers
based on a story by Neil Gaiman
at Cafe Oberon, 2 Arrow Street
Harvard Square, Cambridge
February 13, 2013 at 8pm
online tickets SOLD OUT;
limited number of tickets available at the door only – $23/$28

::: facebook event ::: | Liars & Believers

This coming Wednesday at Oberon, there’s going to be a multimedia theatrical extravanza, based on a new unpublished short story by author Neil Gaiman. The evening will feature music, poetry, storytelling, puppetry, dance, aerial performance and more, from the region’s most experimental and visionary artists. It’s directed by Steven Bogart and will include performances by Mali Sastri, Phillip Berman, Mary Bichner, Brett Cramp, Claire Davies, Jennifer Hicks, John J. King, Eileen Little, Corianna Moffatt, Masha Obolensky, April Ranger, and Karin Webb.

::: Learn about the performers :::

(from the press release): “Come see what lies at the top of the hill, where the Lunar Labyrinth once stood, in this theatrical adaptation of an unpublished new short story by author Neil Gaiman. For one night only, join us for a feast of music, storytelling, puppetry, poetry, dance, aerial performance, and more. Will you be healed by the bright of the moon? Or blighted by the monsters hiding in her shadow?).”

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Introducing… Kodaline

I like a band that says, “Music should have a purpose, you know. Our purpose is honesty.” You really don’t hear that too often. I stumbled upon Dublin-based quartet Kodaline when I first saw their video for “All I Want” (see below). It’s a beautifully touching song and crazy romantic video—proud, unashamed and yes, honest. If I was a television viewer, I might have already been familiar with this gorgeous song, as it was featured in the season 9 episode of Grey’s Anatomy, “Remember the Time.”

In digging deeper, I’m discovering some beautifully literate and emotional music. They’ve actually been around since 2005 as 21 Demands, but since 2011, they’ve been Kodaline. This is pretty wistful, poetic and introspective stuff for such young guys. As lead singer Steve Garrigan says, “For Kodaline, music isn’t just music. It’s therapy.” Indeed. And I can’t help but feel like I’m sitting in on his private session. It feels that personal. Their debut, The Kodaline EP, was released back in September. On March 18, they’ll be releasing The High Hopes EP (which includes a cover of LCD Soundsystem’s “All My Friends”). Their debut album, In A Perfect World, comes out on March 25. They’re currently touring in the UK and Scotland.

web | facebook | twitter | soundcloud | wikipedia

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Introducing… Hayden

Ok, so actually this isn’t an introduction for Canadians, as Toronto-based Paul Hayden Desser a.k.a. Hayden has been performing and quietly releasing albums since 1994. However, he’s known as being something of a reclusive, so don’t be alarmed if you’ve never heard of him and didn’t know that he’s just put out his seventh album, Us Alone. The first six albums were on his own (obscure) Hardwood Records label, but this time, he’s signed with Arts & Crafts, realizing that it might be a good idea career-wise to actually let some people know when you’ve put out new music. It’s possible that what led to this foray into public life was that he was erroneously listed as “deceased” on on his Wikipedia page. Fortunately, the error was brought to his attention by a fan. As he himself said, “I was dead six months before anyone noticed.” Humor is so essential in this business.

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The Radar Brothers release “Eight” & Show @ the Echo in L.A. tonight!

The awesome Los Angeles-based The Radar Brothers just released their new album Eight a few days ago, and they’ve been playing a few ‘release parties’ on the West Coast. Tonight, they’re at the Echo in Los Angeles (with Babies on Acid and Young Unknowns) and well yeah, I’m in Boston, but I’d like to commemorate this anyway.

The music is lovely—pleasantly psychedelic, daydreamy, wistful, lyrical and in places kinda dark and brooding. What more can one ask for? For the time being, you can listen to the entire thing on the Merge Records site. Oh, and on Friday, Feb. 22, they’re doing an in-store at Fingerprints in Long Beach at 7pm. Awesome record store. Yes, that’s also on the West Coast. C’est la vie.

web | facebook | twitter | Merge Records

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