Entries tagged with: Marissa Nadler
PC Music's Hannah Diamond
Gorilla vs Bear posted their lists of their favorite albums (35) and songs (100) of 2014. Though the albums list does have some of the stuff you always see (like The War On Drugs), it's mostly got a lot of unique choices like Recycle Culture, Korallreven, Yumi Zouma, Beverly, Panda Bear's EP and more, and the #1 is pretty unique too. FKA twigs doesn't crack the albums list but she's on the tracks list twice, along with tracks by Tinashe, iLoveMakonnen, Jessica Pratt, Grouper, a Recyle Culture remix of Taylor Swift, and plenty of PC Music representation.
Check out his full lists below...
UK music site Drowned in Sound is kinda the British equivalent of Pitchfork, albeit with a very strong community aspect to it. They just published their 50 Favourite Albums of 2014 list and while it contains many of the LPs we've been seeing on a lot of these lists, it's a distinctly not-American point of view. Well, at least their #1. Check out the whole list below...
Torres at the Seaport in July (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Philly folk rockers Strand of Oaks are on tour now and about to headline their largest NYC show yet on Thursday (12/4) at Bowery Ballroom. Since we last spoke, the similarly-minded Torres was added to a few dates including last night's Toronto show (12/1), the upcoming Philly show, and the NYC show. You can still get tickets to both NYC and Philly. Updated dates are listed below.
In other news, Strand of Oaks main man Timothy Showalter just told Philly.com that his favorite albums of 2014 are Sun Kil Moon's Benji, Marissa Nadler's July, Sharon Van Etten's Are We There and Ryan Adams' self-titled, the latter of which includes the song "My Wrecking Ball" that Strand of Oaks recently covered. You can stream that below. Strand of Oaks' own 2014 LP, Heal, was a favorite of his Philly neighbors, Restorations.
Hear Ya also just put out a live session video of Strand of Oaks playing "Shut In" from their new record. You can watch that, with the Ryan Adams cover and list of dates, below...
Marissa Nadler has no upcoming tour dates at the moment, but she just finished a tour and was in NYC to play CMJ showcases for two labels: Sacred Bones at Trans Pecos and Bella Union at Le Poisson Rouge. We don't have video from those shows, but watch a full set she played in the KEXP studios earlier this year, below. How were the NYC shows?
Meanwhile, it's Halloween, and who better to get a playlist from on this dark holiday than Marissa Nadler. Listen to the creepy holiday mix she made at Spotify. Enjoy selections by Billie Holiday, Mazzy Star, Ry Cooder, John Carpenter and more.
by Andrew Sacher
Last week we mentioned in passing that Dream Police, another project of The Men's Mark Perro and Nick Chiericozzi, will be playing a David Lynch Foundation benefit in NYC with Earth and Cult of Youth, and now the duo have announced their debut album. The album's called Hypnotized and it will be out on November 11 via Sacred Bones (also home to The Men). That's the artwork above. From the sound of the minute-and-a-half-ish teaser video, Dream Police is taking Mark and Nick in a different direction than The Men's recent experiments with country rock, in favor of something more psychedelic. Check it out, with the LP tracklist, below.
In addition to the David Lynch Foundation benefit, Dream Police will be playing the Sacred Bones CMJ Party happening on October 24 at Trans Pecos. Also on the bill is psych rock duo Moon Duo, psych folk/rock project Amen Dunes, and dream folk singer Marissa Nadler. Tickets are on sale now. Show flyer below.
Dream Police teaser, LP tracklist and CMJ show flyer, below...
Helsinki has some nice architecture...
After spending three days shooting portraits and other SoundWave tent activities for us at Lollapalooza in Chicago, BrooklynVegan photographer Dominick Mastrangelo took off to Finland for this year's Flow Festival. Keep checking back for his coverage from the fest throughout the weekend, starting now...
With Lollapalooza in the books for another year, this weekend's summer festivals look west to San Francisco for Outside Lands. And they also look east, way east, across the pond to the Scandinavian and Nordic countries whom are all holding their own festivals. Norway's Oya Festival is up and running while Sweden's Way Out West and Flow Festival in Finland take place Friday through Sunday. At the time of this writing, I'm 31,000 feet over Iceland and bound for the beautiful seaport city of Helsinki for Flow. The lineup is a healthy mix of heavy hitters, indie-popular bands as well as Finnish talent.
Last week's Lollapalooza headliners, Skrillex and OutKast, are headlining on Friday (8/8) and Sunday (8/10)respectively. The National, whose seemingly endless tour in support of last year's Trouble Will Find Me, roll in to town after playing Oya and Way Out West to headline on Saturday.
In addition to the headliners, the fest also features Röyksopp & Robyn, Polica, Little Dragon, Marissa Nadler, The Horrors, Darkside, Bill Callahan and Janelle Monae are also performing. And a handful of artists who performed at Pitchfork a few weeks ago will be making their way to Helsinki as well including Slowdive, Real Estate and Neneh Cherry.
Flow also gives a nod toward festivals like SXSW and CMJ with a host of talks on tech and music as well as a screening over 40 short films. The National will also feature on the film side with a screening of the documentary Mistaken For Strangers.
Update: Being seven hours ahead of New York, I've been out and about in Helsinki today. Posters for Flow are everywhere, the weather was gorgeous and I spent most of my afternoon out on Suomenlinna, a fortress built on six islands in the Gulf of Finland. (That beautiful weather disappeared in less than an hour as it's presently pouring outside.) Some photos from my afternoon jaunt, plus the full Flow lineup, below...
Marissa Nadler is one of the artists we're looking forward to catching this week at Northside -- she plays Pitchfork's showcase at Saint Vitus on Saturday (6/14) with Pharmakon, Youth Code, Pyrrhon, and Couch Slut (tickets). She'll be touring for most of the summer, including one in Boston with Gem Club. Updated dates are listed below.
Meanwhile, Gem Club will be in NYC next week to play Joe's Pub on June 17 with Megan Lui. Tickets are on sale now but if you'd like to go for free we're giving a pair away. Details on that below.
Gem Club will also be opening for Agnes Obel at Bowery Ballroom on August 14. Tickets for that show are on sale now. They've got a few other dates with Agnes, and all are listed below.
All Marissa Nadler and Gem Club dates are listed, along with contest details, below...
by Bill Pearis and Andrew Sacher
Eagulls @ SXSW 2014 (more by Tim Griffin)
As you may well be aware, the The Northside Festival starts this week in Brooklyn, the music portion of which runs from Thursday - Sunday (June 12 - 15). Almost every venue in Williamsburg, Bushwick and Greenpoint are participating, making for a busier-than-usual weekend of showgoing. There are a bunch of high-profile shows happening -- Thee Oh Sees, The War on Drugs, CHVRCHES, Beirut, Courtney Barnett, Sharon Van Etten to name a few -- as well as, of course, the BV's official Northside Showcase which happens Friday (6/13) at Baby's All Right with Operators, the new band of Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs, Divine Fits), plus Little Big League, and Motion Studies. But we've got some other recommendations, so below are 10 relatively smaller Northside shows we think are worth checking out.
Northside Music Badges have sold out -- you can still premium badges -- but tickets are still available to most shows. And if you have a badge, know that entrance is based on capacity so if you really really want to get into a show (like Courtney Barnett which is sold out), go early or buy a ticket if available.
You can keep up to date on Northside Fest happenings via their free IOS app which offers showtimes, maps and such.
Hope to see you at our show on Friday, and around the neighbor this week. Here are our Northside picks:
Hop Along at House of Vans in 2013 (more by Maclyn Bean)
The first on June 13 features Syracuse noise punks Perfect Pussy, Philly indie rockers Hop Along, Cleveland post-punks Pleasure Leftists, and NYC twee singer/songwriter Frankie Cosmos.
Then on June 14, it's headlined by dream folk singer Marissa Nadler, and otherwise features a heavier lineup -- though Marissa is known for her ties to the metal world -- of noise artist Pharmakon, industrial duo Youth Code, tech-death metallers Pyrrhon and sludgy local band Couch Slut.
Hop Along also play NYC about a month later on their tour with Owls.
Marissa Nadler also plays a free Summerstage show.
Pyrrhon also open the Castevet show at Saint Vitus.
Flyers and a few videos below...
Marissa Nadler at Baby's All Right in March (more by Amanda Hatfield)
The schedule for the Summerstage 2014 Season was just announced, and as you may know, in addition to the shows in Central Park, there are also free shows in many other NYC parks too. Those include Brooklyn shows in Red Hook Park, Betsy Head Park, Herbert Von King Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park. Highlights of the Brooklyn Summerstage shows include:
6/3 - Ty Dolla $ign in Red Hook Park (in association with MeanRed Productions)Full Brooklyn Summerstage show schedule below...
6/4 - Mark McGuire, Marissa Nadler and Delicate Steve in Red Hook Park (in association with MeanRed Productions)
6/5 - Pro Era in Red Hook Park (in association with Lyricist Lounge)
6/10 - Duck Down BBQ w/ Boot Camp Clik & Friends in Betsy Head Park
6/18 Salute to Hip Hop w/ DJ Bent Roc, Chubb Rock, Dana Dane and Special Ed (in association with WBLS) in Herbert Von King Park
6/22 - Frankie Knuckles tribute w/ screening of Hands to the Sky (in association with ImageNation Cinema Foundation) in Herbert Von King Park
photos by David Andrako
Delicate Steve @ Baby's All Right - 4/20/14
In the midst of the Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks / Dustin Wong tour, Dustin Wong and Slasher Flicks member (Angel) Deradoorian took a night off to team up with the jammy Delicate Steve for a Brooklyn show at Baby's All Right last night (4/20), following that venue's Grateful Dead Brunch. Pictures of that show are in this post.
Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks and Dustin Wong continue their tour in NYC tonight (4/21) with a sold-out show at Bowery Ballroom.
Meanwhile, Delicate Steve announced that he'll be playing one of this year's Summerstage shows in Red Hook Park on June 7 with psych-folk musician Marissa Nadler and ambient guitarist/ex-Emeralds member Mark McGuire. That's one of many upcoming dates for Marissa Nadler. Her full tour schedule, and more pics from Delicate Steve's Baby's show, below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
Marissa Nadler / Mt. Royal / PINS @ Baby's All Right 3/19/2014
UK label Bella Union launched a North American extension earlier this year and Wednesday night (3/19) had a coming out party at Brooklyn's Baby's All Right, with four of their artists playing. The night was headlined by Marissa Nadler (who's signed to Sacred Bones over here) who played with cello backing. By that point in the evening -- after three rock bands and imbibing -- the crowd was a little chatty for Nadler's delicate style but, pulling from her new album July, she sounded great nonetheless.
The rest of night's line-up were all fresh from SXSW, the best of which was undoubtably Mt. Royal, the new project from Celebration singer Katrina Ford. Their widescreen, ethereal strain of pop is not dissimilar to Blonde Redhead or Beach House, but Ford's magnetic presence and powerhouse pipes distinguishes them immediately. I always liked seeing Celebration live, but Mt. Royal make music I want to listen to at home, too (their debut EP is great).
The night opened with two international bands: Manchester, UK's PINS, who seemed to have raided Dum Dum Girls' wardrobe, make scratchy, scrappy indiepop; and Berlin-based trio Ballet School, who make anthemic techno-rock (I kept thinking of Laura Branigan's "Gloria"). In between sets, Bella Union domo (and onetime Cocteau Twins bassist) Simon Raymonde kept the crowd entertained as DJ. Pics from all of last night's bands are in this post.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Marissa Nadler @ Glasslands - 2/8/14
Psych-folk singer Marissa Nadler just released her fantastic new album, July (her first for Sacred Bones), and celebrated it in NYC with a show at Glasslands over the weekend (2/8) ahead of her imminent tour. The Glasslands show was her first with her new band that includes viola/lap steel player Nina Violet and cello/synth player Janel Leppin. The new musicians also provided backing vocals, fleshing out Marissa's sound, and as you may imagine, made everything sound gorgeous. The show was opened by Zachary Cale and Marissa's Sacred Bones labelmate Amen Dunes, and pictures of all three artists are in this post.
Marissa will return to NYC to play a post-SXSW showcase that Bella Union (the label who put out July in the UK) is putting on at Baby's All Right on March 19. Marissa's headlining, and the rest of the lineup includes Celebration-related Mt. Royal, Berlin synth pop trio Ballet School, Manchester's PINS, and a DJ set by label co-founder (and former Cocteau Twins bassist) Simon Raymonde. Tickets will be on sale soon here. Flyer below.
Marissa also recently made a video for "Was It A Dream" off the new album. Watch that, along with the updated list of tour dates, Bella Union showcase flyer, and more Glasslands pics, below...
by Andrew Sacher
As discussed, psych-folk singer Marissa Nadler is set to release her sixth album, July, on February 4 via Sacred Bones (her first for the label). Not that Marissa hasn't always been great at creating dark music, but it's hard not to feel like the darkness is heightened by it being released by the gothy Sacred Bones label (her name looks great in SB's consistent album cover format, pictured above) and produced by Sunn O)))/Wolves in the Throne Room producer Randall Dunn. Whether or not these factors actually play into the music, this is one of Marissa's best albums yet and one to look forward to. We already got a taste of it from her previously released single, "Dead City Emily," and she's now unleashed another one, "Was It A Dream," with vocal harmonies that are truly, err, dreamlike. You can stream the new single below.
Marissa has also expanded her previously announced tour to include more dates through mid-March. None of the newly added shows are in NYC, but as discussed, she plays here on February 8 at Glasslands with Zachary Cale and her Sacred Bones labelmate Amen Dunes. Tickets for that show are still available.
All dates are listed, along with streams, below...
Marissa Nadler at Rough Trade NYC last week/month (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Dream folk singer Marissa Nadler, who we just caught at Rough Trade NYC on Saturday (11/30) previewing songs from her upcoming record, July (due out 2/4 via Sacred Bones), has already begun announcing more dates for 2014. Not long after the new album's release, she'll play another NYC show on February 8 at Glasslands with her Sacred Bones labelmate Amen Dunes. Tickets for that show are on sale now. It's her only announced East Coast date at the moment, but presumably more are on the way.
All currently known dates are listed, along with a stream of "Dead City Emily" from her new album, below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Marissa Nadler @ Rough Trade - 11/30/13
Right before Phosphorescent's in-store at the new Rough Trade NYC on Saturday (11/30), Marissa Nadler did an in-store of her own. Marissa has a new album, July, coming out this February on her new home of Sacred Bones, and she used the in-store as an opportunity to preview some of those songs live for the first time. She was playing stripped down versions of the songs that she said were really meant to be backed by a band, but they sounded lovely nonetheless. Pictures of her set are in this post.
They continue below...
by Bill Pearis and Andrew Sacher
Lauryn Hill at Rock the Bells 2011 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
A day of being grateful for what they've got, overeating and subsequent afternoon naps, Thanksgiving is the start of a long weekend for many folks, but one that usually doesn't have the most options for things to do -- or bands to see. Weather's not supposed to be so great either. Still, we've rounded up ten musical things to do in NYC during Thanksgiving Weekend. Plus one you can do anywhere with an internet connection and love of making fun of bad movies.
Read on below...
by Andrew Sacher
Marissa Nadler at Elliott Smith tribute (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Dream folk singer Marissa Nadler is on a roll lately, having released her self-titled album in 2011, followed by 2012's The Sister, and now she's got another LP, July, coming out on February 4 in the US. After releasing her last two albums on her own Box of Cedar Records, for this one she's signed to Brooklyn goth/punk/etc label Sacred Bones. Earlier this year, she sang on "Villain" (stream below) off the new Case Studies album (out now on Sacred Bones), and in late 2012 she opened for Sacred Bones recording artists Jozef Van Wissem and Jim Jarmusch in NYC. The album comes out a week later (2/10) via Bella Union in the UK.
She recorded the album with producer Randall Dunn, who has worked with multiple (mostly post-metal, drone, psychedelic) artists including Wolves in the Throne Room, Sunn O))), Earth, Jesse Sykes, and more. It also features strings by Eyvind Kang (who has worked with Blonde Redhead, The Decemberists, Sunn O))), Laura Veirs & more), synths by Steve Moore (not Zombi Steve Moore, but another Sunn O))) and Laura Veirs collaborator), and guitar by Phil Wandscher (Whiskeytown, Jesse Sykes & the Sweet Hereafter).
The first single from July is "Dead City Emily," a track as haunting and delicate as any of her best tracks to date. You can stream that one, along with the new album's tracklist, below.
Marissa was recently in NYC for the Elliott Smith tribute at Glasslands, and she'll be returning for a free in-store at the new Williamsburg record store/venue Rough Trade NYC on Saturday, November 30. It's a day show, starting at 1 PM.
Marissa also contributed to likeminded folk singer Emily Jane White's new album, Blood Lines, which comes out November 19 via Important. Marissa sings on the track "Faster Than the Devil," which you can stream, along with another album cut, "Keeley," below.
All song streams and LP tracklist below...
Charles Bradley @ Lollapalooza 2013 (more by Dana [distortion] Yavin)
This morning, Rough Trade NYC announced a few of their first ticketed evening shows. Now they've just announced a whole lot more, including some free in-stores. The record store/venue opens on November 25 with a free show from Charles Bradley that night. Phosphorescent and Marissa Nadler will both perform free in-stores on November 30, and John Grant performs on December 3 which is free with purchase of his new album Pale Green Ghosts (which comes with an exclusive RT bonus disc). Similarly, Nick Lowe is performing on December 8 and you can get into that one by purchasing his new Christmas album.
Other upcoming free in-stores include Matthew E. White (11/27) and The Stepkids (11/9). Another ticketed shows has been added as well, Allah-Las on 12/6 (no ticket info yet). Updated Rough Trade NYC show schedule is listed below...
Cat Power / Sky Ferreira at Elliott Smith tribute (more by Amanda Hatfield)
As you may have heard, on the tenth anniversary of Elliott Smith's death (10/21), a tribute show went down at Glasslands in Brooklyn with a number of musicians, including Cat Power, Zachary Cole Smith (DIIV), Sky Ferreira, Yoni Wolf (Why?), The Low Anthem, Luke Temple, Marissa Nadler, Aaron Pfenning, Sadie Dupuis (Speedy Ortiz), and more. We already posted pictures, the setlist, and a fan video from the show, and now there's professional video of the show, courtesy of The Bomber Jacket (one of the show presenters). They're planning on releasing the audio from the show as well ("hopefully by Christmas"), and all proceeds from that release will benefit the Elliott Smith Memorial Fund.
Meanwhile you can watch those videos below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Cat Power / Cole & Sky
[Sadie] Dupuis delivered the night's heaviest alt-rock blast, leading a Nirvana-like performance of "Abused" by dialing up the track's soft-loud-soft dynamics. [Marissa] Nadler offered a mesmerizing lullaby with the gentle strums of "Pitseleh." [Yoni] Wolf played three tracks solo on piano, including "Angeles" and "Say Yes," adding his own spin lyrically and musically, something a "chord guy" like Smith would appreciate, Wolf joked.On the tenth anniversary of Elliott Smith's death (10/21), a number of musicians gathered at Brooklyn venue Glasslands for a tribute show. The night's cast included Cat Power, Zachary Cole Smith (DIIV), Sky Ferreira, Yoni Wolf (Why?), The Low Anthem, Luke Temple, Marissa Nadler, Aaron Pfenning, Sadie Dupuis (Speedy Ortiz), Adam Schatz, The Perennials and Tereu Tereu. Pictures of the show, a partial setlist, and a video of Sky Ferreira joining Cat Power for "Pretty (Ugly Before)" are in this post.
Cat Power soon walked onstage and raised a glass from behind the piano -- "cheers to Elliott," she said. She played a solo version of her own tune, the haunting "Names," from 2003's You Are Free, before her band joined for a jazz/R&B-flecked "Between the Bars," which hit with extra punch due to Marshall's own history of alcohol abuse and mental illness.
She handed out knit caps, like those Smith so often wore (Marshall sported a yellow-gold beanie over her bleached blonde hair all night), and closed with From a Basement on the Hill's "Pretty (Ugly Before)." Ferreira joined Marshall onstage, and the two traded verses and invited the crowd to join -- "Fucking sing it if you know it!" shouted Marshall -- on the repeated outro: "I was so ugly before didn't know what to do." The jam-packed audience inside the DIY venue all sang in hushed tones together, in unison. [Rolling Stone]
For Cat Power, this show was ahead of her upcoming solo tour which brings her back to NYC for two shows on November 14 at Brooklyn Masonic Temple (early and late). The early show is sold out but tickets for the late show are still available.
Sadie Dupuis played this just after her band Speedy Ortiz wrapped up a number of CMJ shows, including our Friday party. Speedy Ortiz returns to NYC tonight (10/23) at The Flat for a Mishka show with J Mascis (of Dinosaur Jr). It's an afterparty for the debut of Mishka's new Dinosaur Jr line, which happens at their store (and J will be there doing an in-store signing).
More pictures, the partial setlist and video below...
Like the four Elliott Smith tribute shows that took place in August to honor the songwriting legend in the ten-year anniversary of his death, another will happen in NYC on the actual day of the anniversary, October 21. The tribute show happens at Glasslands and includes some pretty great musicians like Cat Power, DIIV's Zachary Cole Smith with Sky Ferreira, Yoni Wolf (of Why?), The Low Anthem, Luke Temple, Marissa Nadler, Aaron Pfenning (of Rewards, ex-Chairlift), Sadie Dupuis (of Speedy Ortiz), Adam Schatz, The Perennials and Tereu Tereu.
$50 tickets for the show are on sale now, and some of the proceeds will benefit Elliott Smith Memorial Fund. That fund benefits Outside In and Free Arts for Abused Children, and there's also an IndieGogo campaign raising money for Outside In that includes rewards related to the Glasslands show:
* Set lists from the nightCheck out an Elliott Smith video from 2000 below...
* High-quality 12" x 11" concert posters, designed by local artist Allison Specketer
* Live recording of the show (participating bands TBA)
* Goodie Bag (details TBA) from Kill Rock Stars
* High-quality 18" x 24" concert poster, autographed by all the musicians
Marissa Nadler in Chicago in 2011 (more by Ben Rodig)
As mentioned, lutenist Jozef Van Wissem and guitarist/film director Jim Jarmusch, who put out two albums in 2012, followed by Apokatastasis and a contribution to the Sacred Bones RSD comp this year, are playing a show at Mercury Lounge on May 7 with drone guitarist Noveller (who also plays the Drone Activity In Progress show tonight [5/2]). Tickets for the Mercury Lounge show are still available.
Before Jozef heads over to Europe for a tour there, he'll squeeze in a solo gig happening in NYC at Brooklyn's Saint Vitus Bar on May 12 with a great lineup of dream folk singer Marissa Nadler and Entrance Band frontman Guy Blakeslee (who sang on Jozef & Jim's contribution to the Sacred Bones comp). Tickets for that show are on sale now. The Saint Vitus show is Marissa Nadler's only currently announced date other than Canadian festival MoSoFest, which she plays this June.
Jozef also has a new record out this year, Nihil Obstat. Though this one's a solo record, Jim Jarmusch does appear on it. You can stream the track "Where You Lived And What You Lived For" from the album over at NPR. Jozef will celebrate the album in NYC after his European tour with a release show on June 30 at Union Pool. No advance tickets for that show at the moment.
All dates are listed, along with Jozef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch and Marissa Nadler videos, below...
Marissa Nadler @ MHOW, Feb. 2013 (more by Caroline Harrison)
Some of us at BV are excited for Sunday's third season premiere (3/31) of HBO's Game of Thrones. So is Marissa Nadler who has recorded an all-vocal version of its theme song and you can stream that below. Later this season we'll get to hear The Hold Steady's take on Westeros chart-topper, "The Bear & the Maiden Fair," which will play over the closing credits of one of the episodes (probably the penultimate episode).
The show is, of course, based on George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice & Fire" series of novels, of which there are still two more due. Some fans of the books are irked by the show's mainstream success, and The Axis of Awesome has put that into rock song form and you can watch the video for "Rage of Thrones" below.
by Caroline Harrison
Swans @ MHOW, 2/6/2013
New York legends Swans played the first of two sold out shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg last night (2/6), supported by singer-songwriter Marissa Nadler. The shows replaced the ones that Hurricane Sandy so rudely postponed last October.
Nadler's melancholy set was a nice counterpoint to the Swans set to come. She played solo, finger-picking an acoustic guitar to accompany her airy soprano voice. Classifying Nadler as folk doesn't quite capture the depth and breadth of her influences. Her vocals sit somewhere between Joni Mitchell and Shara Worden. Her performance was subtle, almost economical, and it was a nice reminder that much of Swans' newer material does draw on folk influences, even if Swans' music comes in a more aggressive package.
There's something uniquely New York about Swans. They have the grit and fear of 1980s New York baked into their sound. Though their sound has morphed pretty widely over their long and complicated history, Swans retains the quintessential elements. Gira sneers and snarls his way through savage and abusive vocal patterns. He's equal parts front man and conductor, prone to now infamous tantrums when the band isn't meeting his expectations, but the Gira I saw last night was in a downright genial mood. He threw a towel at percussionist Thor Harris to get his attention, but that was the closest Gira came to cussing out anyone on stage.
The band played for just over two hours, incorporating a fair amount of new, unreleased material into their set. They were chest-crushingly loud, and I could feel waves of sound trying to use my abdominal cavity as an echo chamber. A little after midnight, when it seemed like the band could keep going for at least another half hour, Swans finished playing. Gira thanked the audience, and announced, "We are finished for the night. We appreciate your attention."
Swans play again tonight, this time supported by Devendra Banhart, the original opener for the October show. Bring earplugs.