Anaïs Mitchell is first and foremost a storyteller. As a Vermont- and Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter, Mitchell recorded for Ani Difranco’s Righteous Babe Records for several years before starting her own Wilderland label in 2012. Among her recorded work are four full-length albums, including 2010′s sensationally-reviewed Hadestown– a folk opera based on the Orpheus myth– and 2012′s Young Man in America, which was described by the UK’s Independent as ‘an epic tale of American becoming’. Mitchell has headlined solo and band performances worldwide as well as supporting tours for artists like Bon Iver, Ani Difranco, and the Low Anthem (all of whom appear as guest singers on Hadestown). At the moment, she’s touring with friend and collaborator Jefferson Hamer in support of Child Ballads, a co-arranged collection of traditional Celtic and British Isles ballads. If there’s a common thread in Mitchell’s work– from her earliest acoustic records, to the opera, to this new chapter– it’s that she’s as interested in the world around her as the one inside her. She has a way of tackling big themes with the same emotional intimacy most artists use to describe their inner lives. “That’s why,” as one journalist put it, “there’s a sexual ambiguity about her work and why, even in her most intimate moments, she never sounds like a confessional songwriter.”
“The most engaging, and in some ways, most original artist currently working in the field of new American ‘folk’ music” INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
“Terrific….Mitchell is a skilled storyteller..and her delivery gives an emotional complexity that welcomes and even demands repeated listens.” PITCHFORK
“Music of rare boldness and reach. A sensational album” CD of the Week, THE SUNDAY TIMES
“A remarkable, genre-defying album” 4* UNCUT
“A true American original” 4* Q
“Mitchell has done herself proud” 4* THE GUARDIAN
“Nothing short of incredible” 9/10 NME
Rachel Ries crafts sly and compassionate songs for the crooked hearted. With a clear voice and steady hand, she pulls the listener into her world of city grit, country dirt, and her open-eyed search for redemption and reason.
Since her last official 2008 release, Ries (“reese”) has recorded and toured extensively with Anaïs Mitchell and, with Mitchell, toured with Bon Iver. Rachel was granted a Chicago Arts award, worked in the Chicago theater scene, toured Europe and the states, learned how to repair Wurlitzers and (kind of) play the drums.
Her latest record, Ghost of a Gardener, was recorded in Chicago at Pieholden Suite Sounds, studio of the late Jay Bennett (Wilco). Release date: February 2014.
Strictly over 18′s, I.D. may be required.
AFTER THE GIG
Whelan’s Indie Club /// ZEBRA /// [Live Bands and guest DJs] w/ Late Bar from 10:30pm (Free entry before 10:30pm).