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  • The Long Count (Bryce & Aaron Dessner, Kim & Kelley Deal, Matt Berninger, Shara Worden) @ BAM, Brooklyn 10/28/09 1
Tags: , , , / Credit: Julieta Cervantes
Aaron Dessner, Matt Berninger, Bryce Dessner

A few weeks ago we posted an early take of “When You Were Born” (aka “When Yer Born”) from The Long Count. At the time, Aaron Dessner told us the track would eventually include Kim Deal singing on it. Now that we know the piece focuses on twins via the Dessners and the Deals, the Cincinnati Reds’ second back-to-back World Series victories in 1976 (the year the Dessners’ were born), Popul Vuh’s Mesoamerican “ball game” (aka “a reenactment of the creation of the universe,” according to The Long Count artist Matthew Ritchie), and that the project combines a recording of the 1976 World Series with the first two books of Popol Vuh, etc., the context of that track makes sense. (The Long Count’s title comes from Mayan cosmology’s “vast, millennial calender,” which ends/starts again/resets on 12/12/12.) Last night the brothers Dessners’ collaboration with Ritchie opened at BAM and folks got to see how all of this worked off the page. If you weren’t there, take a look at the photos taken by Julieta Cervantes that find the Dessners, guest vocalists Matt Berninger, Shara Worden, and Kim and Kelley Deal and various other players performing on a stage and in front of projections designed/created by Ritchie. There are two remaining performances at 8PM on 10/30 and 10/31. Before the performance on Saturday — full-disclosure, etc. — I’m moderating a discussion at 6PM with the Dessners and Ritchie at BAM’s Hillman Attic Studio. You can get info about all of this at BAM. Here’s a preview in the form of “Bull Run,” (featuring Kelley Deal on vocals) recorded at the University of Illinois’ Krannert Cente last month.

Comments (4)
  1. Who are these people?

  2. pat  |   Posted on Oct 29th, 2009 0

    the dessners are geniuses. they need to spread more music outside the national – there needs to be more music like this.

  3. justin  |   Posted on Oct 30th, 2009 0

    don’t know if anyone realizes this or knew this, but they performed this piece in its entirety with the deal sisters, shara worden, and matt berninger as part of the ellnora guitar festival at the university of illinois back in mid-september. it was an outstanding performance and really special that the deals made it there for such a one-off gig in a college town. the national also played their last show prior to entering the studio to record boxer’s follow up at this festival. also a great performance.

  4. Being from Cincinnati myself I find it really strange how such a middle of the road, hugely average (albeit pretty in the fall) state such as Ohio has produced so many great musicians. The list is pretty amazing. Perhaps the blank template is what gives the artists so much freedom and individuality. Or maybe they just wanna get the fuck outta here.

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