Richard Buckner will release Surrounded on September 3, 2013.
In the time since Our Blood was released and after a few long US and European tours, Buckner attempted to work on writing short stories but found himself drawn back into the music room. The evidence of his time in the writer’s chair is clear in the dense, lovely prose of Surrounded. Lyrically, the album tells the story of escape, longing, and the feeling of watching while being of putting it in a pile with other tangled moments that pass unnoticed but reappear later like a burr suddenly felt, poking at your ankle through a sagging sock.” The liner notes to Surrounded include text-embedded lyrics, a technique Buckner employed on his earlier albums Since and Impasse he used the extended story of the songs to construct the overall view of the album and its track sequence.
Throwing out the “tricks and trades” of his previous albums, Buckner hunkered down in his Kingston, NY, home and chose a few unfamiliar pieces of gear—namely, a Suzuki QChord elec- tronic autoharp and an Electro-Harmonix POG2 pedal—to create basic tracks and open up more sonic possibilities. “The best outcomes happen sometimes when I’m unfamiliar with the tool that I’m using (imagine MacGyver wearing a dog cone).”
The now-infamous process of recording and re-recording Our Blood left him a bit gun-shy, so this time around, Buckner de- to avoid the contamination of over-thinking: “As soon as I had the basics together, I set out to find someplace to send them to,”
Famed producer Tucker Martine came to mind after Buckner heard a podcast interview. “He understood the urgency in me to tie the whole thing up before I fell into the same trap that I’d had finishing Our Blood and was generous enough to move other commitments/plans around to fit Surrounded in as soon as he could. When I finally finished Our Blood, I felt like I’d survived a stroll through a mine field. With Surrounded, it was more of a sensation that I’d successfully organized a messy desk.”
“When you tell me how it is” was the first song chosen for Surrounded. “I wanted the story to open with an all-out attack on the blurred recollections of a ruminator, someone sensing that something is coming. I wrote the opening title track ‘Sur- rounded’ as a setup for ‘When You Tell Me How It Is’ to show someone sitting up through an open-ended night with a feeling that something was going to break.”
The album concludes with “Lean-To” and the lyric “Who set you free believing that you just weren’t trying hard enough?:” As Buckner explains, “I wanted the album to begin where it ended and vice versa, like an Ouroboros calling its own bluff. It’s why I ended it with a question left with a colon to lead it back.”
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).