Snowden

Late Show

Snowden

Warm Ghost

Tue, July 24, 2012

Doors: 9:30 pm

Mercury Lounge

New York, NY

$10 advance / $12 day of show

This event is 21 and over

Snowden
Snowden
Southern by birth and rearing, northern by political disposition and weather preference, Jordan Jeffares is no stranger to oscillation. In the six years that passed since the release of his band Snowden’s first full-length, Anti-Anti (Jade Tree), Jeffares has shifted his base of operation from Atlanta to Chicago, then back, up to Brooklyn, and then down to Austin. When you throw in touring the U.S. and Europe, the scenery changed a lot around Jeffares in recent years. Through all the tumult of relocating, Jeffares has been crafting (and re-crafting) Anti-Anti’s follow-up, ironically titled, given its auteur’s dedication and perseverance, No One in Control. The album will be released by Serpents and Snakes, the Nashville label formed in 2009 by the Kings of Leon, who tapped Snowden to support them on a 2007 tour. The label’s mission is to support hard-working bands it believes in. With Jeffares, the imprint has found a kindred spirit who exemplifies its ideals. Jeffares tracked most of the record on his own in Atlanta and New York, before trekking to western Michigan to join forces with producer Bill Skibbe (The Kills) and build out the sound in the studio. Skibbe mixed the record, and Alan Douches (Kurt Vile, The Twilight Sad) handled the mastering.

Perhaps due to its extended incubation period, No One in Control diverges from the Lower East Side Britpop dance party motif of its predecessor. It also moves away from the wryly observant, barfly narrator, opting for a guide occupying a more mature, plaintive, and, at times, existentialist headspace. It’s a bit of a taking stock record. Anti-Anti’s tracks begged to be remixed, emphasizing pulsating rhythms that undergirded Jeffares’ strident assertions about the pointlessness of hipster ideals or the evocative nightlife scenes. In contrast, No One in Control stays truer to the genesis of all Snowden’s output—the seemingly hermetically sealed cocoon that Jeffares escapes to when doggedly transforming an abstract concept into a piece of music. It’s headphone music for the creative class.

To call the contents of No One in Control “bedroom songs” is to be reductive. Like Bon Iver, Jeffares is a master of creating the singular mood of a man alone with his thoughts. While both evoke the snowy cold that Jeffares prefers as the ambience to his writing sessions, the landscape that Snowden’s music scores is decidedly boots-on-ground urban compared to Justin Vernon’s ear-muffed pastoralism. Snowden’s latest arrangements are a swirl of textures that waft and then envelope the percussion and rhythms at their core, as exemplified best by the ethereal “Anemone Arms.” The epic title track acclimates the listener to the gauzy chamber pop featured in much of the rest of the record before exploding into a synth-encrusted rock gem that Snowden’s fans will recognize as the band’s calling card. The first single to be released from the new work, “The Beat Comes” creeps towards an aural crescendo while Jeffares simultaneously emotes dread and loathing with relief and acceptance through one of his more uptempo vocal performances. At the heart of the doubled vocals and studio accouterments that add depth to “Don’t Want to Know Me” is a song that seems to have had its start as a jangly ballad reminiscent of The Clientele’s oeuvre.

While roots have been pulled and replanted over the past six years, band lineups have gone through several iterations, and labels have come and gone, Jeffares has managed to keep his focus. He credits his stalwart supporter and earliest patron, his brother Preston, for keeping him focused in moments of frustration. With his older sibling’s sage stewardship, Jeffares has put together the most sonically sophisticated collection of tracks he’s penned and constructed to date—effectively moving beyond influences such as Interpol, The Zombies, and The Clientele to carve a niche of his own in the post punk landscape.
Warm Ghost
Warm Ghost
Words from Adam Wills of Bear In Heaven

Cold Wave synths. David Sylvian-esque vocals. 10 second delay. This is Warm Ghost, the musical project of songwriter and long-time friend, Paul Duncan. It has since turned into a 3 piece band with Daniel Lewis and Jon Minor. They debuted by releasing a pretty much perfect EP, "Claws Overheard" on our favorite micro-label out of Atlanta called Geographic North, and have since released an LP on Brooklyn-based label, Partisan. Paul has been putting out solo records for the last 10 years, and we all agree, this is his best effort yet. Most of us have played either on Paul's records or in his live band over the years, and I gotta say, I wish I was in this one too. These songs blend just about everything I like about music. Low frequencies, smart chord changes, minor scale drones, heartfelt lyrics, and infectious hooks. There's certainly been a surge of synth-driven pop bubbling to the surface over the last year (um, dunno if you've noticed from our record, we love synths) but I think it's Paul's vocals that truly separates them from their peers... Paul's vocal range is wide and able, and adding this super romantic warmth to a colder musical palette. Warm Ghost has played a handful of shows here in NYC over the last couple of months, and all signs point to big things for these guys. Dig it.


Paul has also collaborated with numerous other artists including Oren Ambarchi (SunnO))), Type Records), Joe Stickney (Bear in Heaven), Chris Bear (Grizzly Bear), RobertoLange (Helado Negro), Fred Lonberg-Holm ( Jim O'Rourke, Boxhead Ensemble), David Daniell (Rhys Chatham's Essentialist, San Agustin) and Doug McCombs (Tortoise, Brokeback) among others.

Warm Ghost released it's debut EP, Claws Overhead, on the label Geographic North on May 11th, 2010 and has since released their debut full length, Narrows, on Partisan Records in September of 2011. They are currently in the studio writing and recording their 2nd LP.
Venue Information:
Mercury Lounge
217 E Houston St.
New York, NY, 10002
http://mercuryloungenyc.com