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Damien Jurado



May 19, 2013

$15 General Admission / Non-Refundable tickets available at ticket web

or at P&H 760 365 5956

Welcome to Maraqopa, population

2. Damien Jurado's newest collaboration with producer Richard Swift

drops us into a brutal and benevolent landscape. The bold strokes and

new turns the pair made with 2010's Saint Bartlett are taken

even further. He throws open the gate on his oft insular dirges and

allows them do some real wilding out in the canyon. In Maraqopa,

the vistas are miles-wide; the action is more dynamic; the close-ups

sweaty and snarling. The strummed desert blues that begin "Nothing is

the News" quickly bursts open into an Eddie Hazel-worthy supernova shred

session, all of it swirling in tinny-psych and Echoplex'd howls. We've

never heard anything like this from Jurado. Fifteen years into his

remarkable career, and he continues to blossom. Jurado and Swift

establish themselves not only as inventive, trusting collaborators, but

as one another's spirit animals in American outsider songcraft —lone

wolves in black sheep's clothing. Swift is the Ennio Morricone to

Jurado's Sergio Leone.

At Swift's National Freedom studios,

the live-to-tape ethos allowed these songs to expand and retract like a

great beast's breath. Every in-the-moment bell and whistle here is hung

with a natural, casual care. And from this, each song offers up its own

unique gift: the enchanting children's choir that echoes each line of

Jurado's lament for innocence lost on "Life Away from the Garden"; the

breezy bossa nova that begins "This Time Next Year" and rises as

effortless as a smoke cloud into high-noon showdown pop; "Reel to

Reel"'s wobbly, Spector-symphony and its meta themes; the wonderful

falsetto vocal work Jurado pulls from himself on "Museum of Flight." The

Seattle Times recently called Jurado "Seattle's folk-boom godfather," a

praising recognition to be sure. But also a title Jurado might not yet

be ready to accept. That's a title for someone who has settled. With

each visit to National Freedom, Jurado is exploring, taking risks. He's

not only freeing his songs. The gate is opened wide to allow us all into

his once-isolated musical universe. One gets the sense he's just now

hitting his stride.

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