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Blitzen Trapper

Tuesday, November 13, 2018, 4:00 AM

It was on September 23, 2008 that Blitzen Trapper, after putting out three albums on its own label, released its fourth full-length album, Furr, via Sub Pop. At that time, it was a record that captured exactly where the bands frontman, Eric Earley, found himself, both literally and metaphorically, geographically and existentially. Not that the Portland-based musician actually remembers much about the creation of the records 13 intriguing, spellbinding songs. Or, more specifically, what its songs actually mean, either now or then. Instead, Furr, stands as a kind of tribute and elegy to the city that inspired it, but that, a decade later, no longer exists.What I was trying to do with those recordings, explains Earley, was capture this kind of atmosphere that I was feeling and which pervaded the city at that time. I think I was attempting to capture what Portland was at the time and what it felt like to me. That city is gone now. Old Portland, we call it, but Old Portland has disappeared. But this record gives me the feeling of those times and this city when it was poor and dumpy and really drug-addled. And it also captures the magic of the outlying rural areas that has slowly changed as well.That magic can be heard in each of these songs, and while the city may have vanished from sight replaced by a newer, richer, shinier and bigger version of itself its elegance and fractured beauty is preserved within the bones of this record. These songs exist as vivid snapshots of that time, ones that recall the city as it was. At the same time and while Earley insists he was only trying to capture what Portland was at the time theres a mythology within the lyrics and the music, an imagined, semi-fictional vision of Portland and the Pacific Northwest, a kind of parallel universe to the one that actually exists.Back then, the city was this really weird place, says Earley. It was really bizarre. Weird stuff would happen. And it was much poorer and much smaller. It wasnt as structured and rich as it is now. It was a totally different place. Thats why its funny when people talk about Portland Im like well, if you didnt live here back then youll never experience what that was like but if you listen to this record youll get a little taste of it. So in that sense, it feels very real and non-mythical to me.That said, that doesnt mean these songs are all based in reality. There are glimpses of God and of American Christianity throughout them, not least in the mournful folk narrative of Black River Killer and God & Suicide. The former is a made-up tale about an anonymous murderer on a killing spree which Earley cites as being about the mindless violence that Americans consume every single day in film and books and everything and what does it mean for us to consume that content and make it a part of us? The latter is a shimmering, more upbeat track thats an attempt to commit to tape an ineffable feeling that Earley felt within him but which, after all these years, hes still unable to pinpoint exactly.I cant tell you what that songs about, he says. I know what it feels like, but I dont know what it actually literally means. But the words and the music gave me this feeling as I was writing it that made sense at the time. I feel like theres a feeling of longing that accompanies this record somehow, and theres this weird longing to be set free. I feel thats what kind of pervades this record a melancholic longing for something that we cant obtain. In God & Suicide its almost likeand its me obviouslybut its almost like whoever is saying those words is saying to himself Well Ive got two choices. Either I kill myself or I somehow make my peace with whatever God is.Not all the songs have such existential explanations. The soft acoustic jangle of the title track is full of wistful longing, while the plaintive, poignant piano of Not Your Lover is a forlorn love or loss of love song full of tender sadness. Thats one of a few songs that wouldnt actually exist had

Cost: $20 GA//$35 Loft
Tickets: http://www.awin1.com/cread.php?awinmid=7219&awinaffid=137486&clickref=&p=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.stubhub.com%2Fblitzen-trapper-tickets-blitzen-trapper-solana-beach-belly-up-tavern-11-12-2018%2Fevent%2F103677721%2F

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