Shearwater, Great Lake Swimmers, Dusted – The Button Factory, November 28th

Here’s a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Austin rockers Shearwater with Great Lake Swimmers and Dusted who play The Button Factory next Wednesday, November 28th.

We’re in an era in which minimalism and lower-than-low-tech have come in vogue. By contrast, Shearwater’s recordings—the epic “Island Arc” trilogy of Palo Santo, Rook and The Golden Archipelago in particular—have been expansive in a fashion like none of their contemporaries.

Presumably unfamiliar with the adage, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”— Shearwater opted to ditch an approach that paid huge artistic dividends over their last three Matador albums for a record that seems shockingly direct, immediate and intensely personal. No strangers to lush, crafted recordings, but this one sounds like no prior Shearwater incarnation. And please, don’t mistake that for a suggestion this is anyone’s notion of a traditional, singer-songwriter album.

Though it’s possibly a wild projection to claim a few years of bouncing through various band lineups, record labels (Animal Joy, their latest album was released on Sup Pop) and places of residence have led to a radical reboot, I’m a big believer in citing circumstantial evidence and letting the jury figure it out for themselves. Someone’s bound to label ‘Animal Joy’ Shearwater’s transitional album, but to these ears, it sounds like a thrilling artistic rebirth.

Great Lake Swimmers
 return to Dublin with New Wild Everywhere their fifth studio album and follow up to 2009’s Juno and Polaris-nominated album Lost Channels. New Wild Everywhere captures all of the excitement and intuitive musicianship of a group at the peak of their creative powers, with 12 new tracks that reveal a depth and maturity only previously hinted at by lead singer and songwriter Tony Dekker. Produced by longtime Great Lake Swimmers’ collaborator Andy Magoffin, New Wild Everywhere marks the first time in the band’s history that an album was recorded in a real studio (Toronto’s Revolution Recording); past albums have been famously recorded in historic churches, castles, music venues and more.

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After six years of constant Holy Fuck touring, Brian Borcherdt emerged from the tangled cables and broken drum machines with a slew of new songs. Looking to explore a different sound, Borcherdt teamed with drummer Leon Taheny and recorded in a converted garage under the name Dusted.

The resulting album, Total Dust, resides in an atmosphere that is sometimes melodic, sometimes haunting, and always clouded by a fuzzy glow. With string arrangements and half-hidden guitar feedback held together by the occasional tambourine and minimal drum machine, the stripped down mood perfectly complements a collection of songs that are more than capable of standing on their own merits. Live, Dusted challenges the sonic limitations of a two-piece. Vocals and guitar are expelled through small overblown amplifiers and bolstered by a raucous backbone of live drums, 808 samples, and bass synth.

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To win the tickets just send an email with SHEARWATERTICKETSPLEASE as its subject to [email protected] by midnight on Monday 26th.

POD presents
Great Lake Swimmers
The Button Factory
7:30pm, Wednesday November 28th
Tickets €15 (inc. booking fee) available from Ticketmaster and usual outlets.

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