Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Harvey Girls new album "Sidereal Time" and album release show

Editor's note: Correction!  THG is playing October 13th, not the 23rd as I had reported.
Melissa und Hiram- aka The Harvey Girls

The Harvey Girls have been friends of the blog for a long time.  Back in April of '09 I toured with THG (in their solo-Hiram-looper configuration) as one half of Coeur Machant.  It was a whirlwind two-day blitz through Tacoma and Oly, and I was not only blow away by their amazing corpus of psych-pop songs, but also by how erudite and grounded their touring half- Hiram- was.

So it's with great pleasure that I can announce THG's latest- Sidereal Time, coming out October 9 on Circle Into Square.  Checking out albums like this- Portland act, Portland recorded, Portland label, unhipster- is exactly what Crappy Indie Music was made for.

If there is such a thing as the "Portland sound" as I understand it, Sidereal Time has it.  Sure, the songs are low-key pop with a wistful vocal sound- think Mark Oliver Everett- and prominent acoustic guitar elements, but we also hear harps, glockenspiel, banjo (provided by the legendary Josh Millard) and more.  Mind you, I realize this is not a new technique.  Everyone from half-assed garage acts to slick and soulless big label projects have a zither and a hurdy gurdy or whatever, but sometimes an album is more than the sum of its parts.  The lyrics are smart without being "clever" and cute without being "twee", but where Sidereal Time stands out is a ... darkness.  Sometimes it's obvious, in songs with deep drones or layered field recordings, but other times seemingly only implied.  Surely I don't have to tell you that for a work of art to possess a certain mystery is nothing but good.

So have a listen to Sidereal Time, and pick it up on the 9th.  The Harvey Girls will be playing a release show on October 13th at the Record Room, backed by Rllrbll (I can hear Goldie squeeing now!) and Wow/Flutter.  This is neither the full THG studio sound, or Hiram's lone shoegaze, but a sort of THG power prog trio.  Sounds like a spicy meatball to me!

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