"His dark pronouncements make even Nick Cave sound positively giddy by comparison." -- Blurt
Chicago songwriter Tim Larson shares a new song from his forthcoming sophomore album Vargar via Brooklyn Vegan today. The brooding tune "Chasing It" is available to listen/share HERE.
Previously, Larson shared the first track, "6" to kick off Midwestern tour dates. That song is available to stream/download HERE.
The history of song, put simply, is at its heart our collective attempts at confronting entropy. As all things move toward their end; as relationships grow and break down, we use music either as an escape or as catharsis to soften the impact. Vargar, the sophomore album by Chicago songwriter Tim Larson explores a range of themes relating to "the end."
Larson's stark, often blunt lyrics and weathered baritone shares similarities to Michael Gira (Swans, Angels of Light) and Mark Lanegan, while the music often takes a more direct, anthemic approach reminiscent of The National. And, there are also generous shades of hazy shoegaze guitar and moody gothic overtones wedded to song structures that are pure American folk/blues at heart. It's no surprise that Larson's varied influences connect the dots between Son House and Bauhaus.
Album opener "Chasing It" fades in with a slowly strummed open-tuned guitar line that might sound akin to John Lee Hooker if it weren't drenched in chorus and delay effects. Ominous organ notes hang above the proceedings, until the song opens up with its soaring chorus as Larson intones of exhaustion over chasing a degenerate lifestyle. "6" kicks off at a forceful clip with quickly strummed guitars and driving drums as Larson repeats the chorus refrain, "we're not the same as we were." It's an acceptance of the inevitability of change, despite our own best attempts to quell the advance of time. Elsewhere, "Dust" sets a metaphor for whatever one's albatross might be, as Larson's sturdy rasp proclaims, "everything I know about dust, I wish I'd forgot." Throughout, Vargar is both lyrically and musically evocative with a masterful economy of instrumentation.
Larson has a college degree in music composition, being skilled at guitar, bass, mandolin, violin and piano. Born and raised in south side Chicago, he spent much of his college years touring as a member of the acclaimed Irish band The Drovers. In 2002, he retired from the band and has since been earning what we'd call an "honest living" in the asphalt business and pursuing his own music, releasing a solo debut No Weapons, No Allies in 2007, then with backing band The Owner/Operators for A New Deal and A Done Deal EP in 2011. Now, Larson returns as an eponymous solo artist. He's joined on Vargar by drummer Ryan Durdin, formerly of The Winter Sounds.
Vargar (a Swedish word for wolves) will be available on CD and download on February 4th, 2014.
TIM LARSON LIVE:
02/08 Chicago, IL @ Saki (album release party)
Artist: Tim Larson
Label: Follow Death
Release Date: February 4th, 2014
01) Chasing It (MP3)
02) 6 (MP3)
04) Don't Look Down
06) I Follow Death
07) Dark Outside
On The Web: