Band To Watch

Band To Watch: Singer

Their own mini avant choir, Singer write songs that allow all four members to chime in vocally, each maintaining a separate spaciousness, around which the guitars, bass, and drums remain harmonious but noncommittal. The group could be considered a “super,” if the other bands they play (or played) in were bigger. Instead, Singer’s a band consisting of folks from some other really great, often overlooked projects: Bassist Robert Lowe was in the excellent 90 Day Men and currently does mesmerizing solo work as Lichens, guitarist Todd Rittmann and drummer Adam Vida were in U.S. Maple, and Adam’s brother Ben Vida’s in Town and Country and his solo project Bird Show. The quartet’s seven-song debut trips into a loose-knit, psychedelic, jazzy realm. There’s tension — lots of it — bolstered by well-earned moments of post-rock release. You’ll need to close your eyes and open your ears while things congeal (the map’s torn, but it does make sense). Parts turn on a dime, then split into four bits and parcel out the change. Elegant guitars turn into shards the moment the drums dig into a solid, ass-kicking beat. The guys barbershop over sheets of drone (on the fine “Please, Tell The Justices We’re Fine”). Snares crumble, but gain momentum through that deconstruction. Feedback sprouts from silence. Let’s see how many more of these we can do, Letterman. Bowie trying to keep up with Thinking Fellers Union Local 282 (see “Party Lessons”)? Yeasayer hollowed out by Tony Conrad-loving minimalists (look toward the opening of “Mauvais Sang”)? OK, strap on your headphones for this.

Band To Watch: Singer
[Photo by T. Albbertt Rittmann; L to R: Robt A.A. Lowe, Adam Vida, Ben Vida, Todd Rittmann]

Singer – “Dumb Smoke” (MP3)

That’s some fractured virtuosity. If you’ve caught recent Lichens performances, you’ll recognize Lowe’s falsetto. It also has a Malkmus-y gate. When not imploding. If you liked that, you can listen to three additional Unhistories at MySpace. Pay close attention to “Oh Dusty.”

Unhistories is out 3/25 on Drag City. They might just be coming to your town.

04/18 – Grinnell, IA @ Gardner Lounge at Grinnell Main Hall
04/19 – Northfield, MN @ The Cave at Carleton College
04/20 – Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock Social Club
04/21 – Iowa City, IA @ The Picador
04/22 – Springfield, MO @ Randy Bacon Gallery
04/23 – St. Louis, MO @ The Billiken Club at St. Louis
04/24 – Cincinnati, OH @ Gypsy Hut
04/26 – Baltimore, MD @ Floristree Space
04/29 – New York, NY @ Knitting Factory Tap Bar
04/30 – Brooklyn, NY @ Glasslands Gallery
05/01 – Buffalo, NY @ Soundlab
05/02 – Toronto, ON @ Sneaky Dee’s
05/03 – Montreal, QC @ Casa Del Popolo
05/04 – New Haven, CT @ The Bar
05/05 – Allston, MA @ Great Scott

Tags: Singer