Pin It
Favorite

CD Review-Damien Jurado 

by Mike Corrigan


On I Break Chairs, Seattle singer/songwriter Damien Jurado finds himself for the first time shored up by the muscle of a full band. And the results are, for the most part, stunning.


When the anthemic chords of "Paper Wings" kick in to lead off the album, it's like a bell ringing in the town square, heralding in the new. But underneath the sparkling electric guitars and crackling acoustic drums is the same terrific song-craft and unflinching vulnerability that are Jurado's most indelible and endearing marks. As on previous outings (Ghost of David, Rehearsals for Departure), dark comments on human frailty are wrapped in achingly beautiful, understated pop structures accented by Jurado's immediate and distinctive vocals.


I Break Chairs places loss, despair, alienation and disillusionment alongside a shimmering sliver of redemption. Guitar feedback from the angry "Dancing" segues into the elliptical, bright affirmation of "Birdcage." Glockenspiel, slowly strummed rhythmic guitar and a double vocal frame "Air Show Disaster," a gorgeous little jewel with a somber, fatalistic ring ("They listen to me 'cause I'm the one who makes them famous/ It's another nice day for an air show disaster").


The only real clunker on the album is "The Way You Look," where Jurado mates an uninteresting melody with an equally uninteresting lyric and makes it worse with the addition of an ungodly -- and infuriatingly ubiquitous -- analog synthesizer lead.


But things rebound quickly with "Like Titanic," wherein the songwriter relates the visceral though fleeting joys found within a relationship on a knife's edge ("We go dancing and we set fires/ We tell secrets and tell them lies"). When he admits "I have many questions, places I can go/I don't know the meaning of no trespassing" you can't help but relate.





Is there a CD you'd like to see us review? Send your tips to [email protected]
  • Pin It

Latest in Comment

  • On the Street
  • On the Street

    Have you ever been called a "special snowflake"?
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • America's Greatest Resource
  • America's Greatest Resource

    In a country of wonderful — and destructive — contradictions, we must listen to each other
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • Independence of Mind
  • Independence of Mind

    The dance around the Neil Gorsuch nomination underlines the stakes of getting a peek inside his head
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • More »

Comments


Comments are closed.

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue
Mammoths & Mastodons: Titans of the Ice Age

Mammoths & Mastodons: Titans of the Ice Age @ Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture

Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through May 7

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Mike Corrigan

  • Lights, Camera, Skate
  • Lights, Camera, Skate

    Two local artists have transformed their love of skateboarding into a new variety show on Community Television.
    • Dec 14, 2011
  • For Your Consideration
  • For Your Consideration

    A raucous good time from Thee Oh Sees. Plus, vintage horror and a Berlin filmmaker to check out.
    • Nov 22, 2011
  • Time Travelers
  • Time Travelers

    For some local store owners, finding intriguing merchandise isn’t just business, it’s an obsession.
    • Nov 22, 2011
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • We Have Not Yet Begun to Fight

    Why we're filling the streets to protest Trump's inhumane, dangerous policies
    • Feb 2, 2017
  • Obscene Gestures

    Spokane political party leaders hope to harness post-election passion into civil discourse. But so far, there's only been more strife
    • Feb 9, 2017
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


green zone


marijuana


Comment


do something


Readers also liked…

  • To Kill the Black Snake
  • To Kill the Black Snake

    Historic all-tribes protest at Standing Rock is meant to stop the destruction of the earth for all
    • Sep 8, 2016
  • Zero Accountability
  • Zero Accountability

    As a leader in the House, Cathy McMorris Rodgers somehow manages to deflect the disaster she's presiding over
    • Oct 15, 2015

© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation