Brian Carpenter & The Confessions – “Beautiful Jane” (Stereogum Premiere)
Boston musician Brian Carpenter is one of those guys who has worked with so many big names that he seems bound to become a big name himself. Swans, Marc Ribot, Harvey Pekar, and Colin Stetson are among Carpenter’s collaborators, and his own music with Brian Carpenter & The Confessions exudes the sort of dignified darkness you’d expect given the company he keeps.
“Beautiful Jane,” from Carpenter’s upcoming The Far End Of The World, begins with heavy-reverb guitar cutting through dense, measured organ chords. He sings with a weary confidence and a hint of absurd side-eye, striking a tone somewhere between Ira Kaplan and Bill Callahan as he tells the story of ex-lover whose touch is now consigned to his dreams. Eventually the song blooms into lush strings and background vocals that change the feeling from “cathedral” to “church.” It’s a wonderful song, and as Carpenter explains, he almost scrapped it:
I kept changing the arrangement. I was never satisfied with it. Finally, something clicked last winter…one dismal night camped inside the studio as if it were a nuclear fallout shelter. It took the worst winter in Boston history to force me to finish it. Maybe the winters here are good for something after all.
Hear “Beautiful Jane” below.
Carpenter has a handful of East Coast live dates coming up:
09/25 Somerville, MA @ Cuisine En Locale w/Adam Glasseye & the Insect Fable, Rabbit Rabbit, and Big Lazy
10/30 New York, NY @ Rockwood Music Hall
11/14 Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie w/Gringo Motel and F.Woods
The Far End Of The World is out 10/2 on Accurate Records.