Band of Horses

Band of Horses

Midlake

Thu, July 24, 2014

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

The Capitol Theatre

Port Chester, NY

$35.00

This event is 18 and over

This event will have a general admission standing room only floor and a reserved seated Loge and Balcony. Reserved Loge and Balcony tickets will NOT have access to the general admission floor.

Band of Horses
Band of Horses
Way back in 2010 I opened my mouth to say that Infinite Arms felt to me like it was the first Band of Horses record. I was trying to imply that I finally had the band I'd always dreamt of, that the album was a celebratory debut of
this unit. Or was I joking? That's the thing: I've finally become comfortable enough in this band that sometimes I don't even know when I'm joking.

To me, Band of Horses has always been a study in contradictions. Not just high / low or dark / light. I'm talking absolute piss-taking jokes that no one will ever get vs. serious as a heart-attack paranoia or wallowing sadness.

Where does that leave us to go now? If Infinite Arms was our beloved pet that we possibly spoiled rotten and stuffed full of too many "treats," then
Mirage Rock would be his surprise little brother left on our doorstep. Maybe a bit rougher around the edges, but the same wily, feral bloodline.

Mirage Rock was more fun and easier to make than any record I've ever played on. For much of that, I can't give enough credit to Creighton Barrett,
Ryan Monroe, Bill Reynolds and Tyler Ramsey. In the five or so years that this line-up has been writing, recording and solidifying as a live powerhouse and second family, we've all learned how crucial collaboration is to our formula, and that no one person's idea is more important than another's.

Then there's the guy who created the environment that enabled us to have the most fun ever had making a Band of Horses record: Glyn Johns. As fate would have it, Glyn was finishing up--or had just finished, I really don't
know--an album for one of our manager's other clients, heard some of our primal demos for this record, and before we knew it he was part of the process: at the controls, on the tape machine, and in the producer's chair. It
was a natural fit: Given how much Glyn's fingerprints were all over the parents' record collections we grew up on, it's not hard to imagine how Glyn influenced so much of not only our tastes and musical voices and
personalities, but Rock n Roll as we know it: The Stones, The Beatles, The Who, The Small Faces, The Clash, Clapton... Glyn is part of the fabric of this music and it's all been part of us since childhood.

So of course we wanted to bring some Rock n Roll to Glyn Johns. If not just
to prove that we could record an album with everyone playing at the same time in the same room with minimal overdubs, then to just to see if we could make the old man boogie a bit and get into his wheelhouse. What we ended up with in the end is an album that visits many of the textures that I feel we work best with--and also the opportunity to challenge ourselves with a few new ones. The larger sound of the arena-baiting "Knock Knock" and the sloppy dirge of "Feud" may remind the listener of an earlier Horses. The
straight-forward honesty of "How to Live" and "Everything's Gonna Be Undone" may conjure a longtime listener's favorite Horses concert memory. And the sincere "Slow Cruel Hands of Time" hopefully pulls every one of you into a story in which you're the main character.

And as with all great experiences, Mirage Rock left us with some questions too: Is "Dumpster World" a joke? Is "Heartbreak On The 101" the saddest song we've ever recorded? Is it even meant to be sad?

Really, I'm asking you. I can't even tell what number album this is for Band of Horses.

Godspeed, Ben Bridwell
(Ben Bridwell is lead singer and guitarist of Band of Horses, which he founded in 2004 and whose discography includes the albums Everything All The Time, Cease To Begin, 2010's Grammy-nominated Infinite Arms and the
new Mirage Rock. Bridwell resides in his native SouthCarolina with his family and enjoys weekly trivia nights when his band is off the road, which is not too often these days.)
Midlake
Midlake
An antiphon is a call-and-response style of singing, from Gregorian chants to sea shanties. In the case of Denton, Texas' favourite sons Midlake, it's the perfect title for a bold response to a new phase in the band's illustrious career, with a re-jigged line-up and a newly honed sound as rich and symphonic as it is dynamic and kaleidoscopic.
Anyone who knows Midlake's preceding albums will recognise some constituent parts of Antiphon: the quirky psychedelia of 2004 debut Bamnan and Slivercork, the '70s soft-rock strains of breakthrough album The Trials Of Van Occupanther and the Brit-folk infusion of 2010's The Courage Of Others. But their fourth album is another fascinating departure, but also a logical progression. The sound is simultaneously familiar and changed.
"It's always through the scope of Midlake," says vocalist/guitarist Eric Pulido, "but on Antiphon we wanted to embrace the psychedelia, style and nuance you might hear in bands from yesteryear while also being aware of music influences leading up to and present now. The result was less folk and more rock. Less nostalgic and more progressive. Now the sky's the limit."
This growth is down to the ambition and ability of Pulido (vocals, guitars, keyboards) Paul Alexander (bass, keyboards, bassoon, guitars, backing vocals), McKenzie Smith (drums, percussion) and Eric Nichelson (guitars, autoharp), plus Jesse Chandler (keyboards, piano, flute, backing vocals) and Joey McClellan (guitars, backing vocals) from Midlake's last live incarnation. But it's also down to the absence of Midlake's former singer Tim Smith, who left the band in November 2012.
As Pulido explains, Midlake had finished touring in support of The Courage Of Others in November 2010. "We immediately returned to the studio, as we always did. With hindsight, that wasn't a good thing to do." The Courage Of Others had taken the best part of two years to make, and they found themselves struggling to achieve their aim. Midlake tried recording at the farm in Buffalo, Texas where they'd had success with The Courage Of Others, "but we knew something was missing," Pulido recalls. The band took a break to play a few concerts, "to try out new songs and keep ourselves out there. One show was Bella Union's 15th anniversary at the End of the Road Festival, which we didn't realise would be our last with Tim."
After some time back in Denton, Smith announced his departure. In the fall-out over the spoils of what had been recorded, the remaining members decided to start afresh, and wrote and recorded Antiphon in six harmonious months – bar 'Vale', which had been demoed without Smith during one of the sessions.
With its ravishing, rippling textures symptomatic of Antiphon's scale, 'Vale' showed how far they'd already come. The remaining nine tracks – the album is free-flowing in feel, concise in structure – confirm it's very much Midlake, but uncannily rebooted, and relaxed.
The band had already validated their sublime instrumental mettle by backing John Grant on his award-winning 2010 solo debut Queen Of Denmark; now they had to step into new roles, collaborate on songwriting and have Pulido take over as frontman. He admits it wasn't the easiest transition for any of the band but the experience was enormously freeing: "Antiphon is the most honest representation of the band as a whole, as opposed to one person's vision that we were trying to facilitate."
For example, 'The Old And The Young', a lighter, swinging version of the 'new' Midlake, has elements of "bouyancy" that Pulido says were long suppressed. "The chorus is catchy and has a lift, like we were releasing the dove! I love many genres of music - from Abba to Zappa, and I wanted to write in a way that wasn't putting parameters around what it is we were creating. It was a more honest representation of who we really are."
"The past is what got you to where you are now, so you shouldn't be a malcontent about it," acknowledges Pulido. That's the gist of 'The Old And The Young', one of the lyrics on Antiphon that refers to embracing what is rather than lamenting what was. 'Provider Reprise' is "a farewell, like the sound you might hear when you enter the gates of heaven!" The gentler 'Aurora Gone' concerns divorce while 'This Weight' concerns the selfishness of man, "turning away from this existence, to do your own thing," says Pulido. "It could be just as much about me as it is about anyone."
After the costumed antics of the band's last two album covers, the colour-saturated globe on Antiphon takes a different tack, and a broader picture outside of Midlake's internal dynamic. "It conjures imagery of a celebratory fireworks display," Pulido suggests "but it's actually a diagram of an exclusive group of connected entities with disproportionate amounts of control over the global economy. It's a beautiful way to show a darker side of things in the world."
Antiphon has a similarly paradoxical nature – from stress and upset, something positive and creative has emerged. Midlake is dead, long live Midlake.
Venue Information:
The Capitol Theatre
149 Westchester Avenue
Port Chester, NY, 10573
http://thecapitoltheatre.com/