Barn Owl – “Shadowland” (Stereogum Premiere)
In March we heard from one-half of Barn Owl, Evan Caminiti, via a solo guitar piece “Burning A Hole Through The Sky.” He’s back with Barn Owl partner Jon Porras for Shadowland, an airier and (even) sparer offering than 2010’s Ancestral Star. Cross-pollination? We’re told the 23-minute EP, which features three meditative/melancholic/minimalist guitar/synth stereo-delayed collisions recorded by Trans Am’s Phil Manley, was inspired by the “devotional sounds” of Popol Vuh and Alice Coltrane along with Fushitsusha and early Tangerine Dream. The guys do a good job describing the title track:
A distant, hazy mantra marches into infinity, a seemingly unchanging organic cycle of interwoven guitars all tracked live without actual loops, the horizontal motion eventually interrupted by bombastic, feedbacking, twang guitar and a malevolent yet beautiful mirage-like lead (thanks to a Leslie speaker) that warbles atop the mix.
Shadowland is out 6/21 via Thrill Jockey. Expect a new full-length Lost In The Glare in September. Exciting developments:
In addition to guitars and organ, Lost In The Glare features a Juno 60, manipulated cassette tapes, tanpura and gong played by Michael Elrod (The Alps, Date Palms), Steve Dye on bass clarinet (Portraits), and the crucial contribution of drummer Jacob Felix Heule. Heule’s playing is paradoxically heavy and commanding, subtle and elegant. Morphing from hypnotic processions to abstract ritualistic clatter and orchestral swells, his addition to Barn Owl takes the sound to new heights.