Music Hall of Williamsburg
Devotchka

Devotchka

Clare And The Reasons

Fri, September 14, 2012

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Bowery Ballroom

New York, NY

This event is 18 and over

Devotchka
Devotchka
For more than a decade, DeVotchKa has been melting its sweeping collection of influences into an authentic and totally original blend of rock 'n' roll. With the release of the band's fifth album, "100 Lovers" (Anti- Records, 2011), the band headed back to the romantic influences of the Arizona desert with producer Craig Schumacher (Calexico, Neko Case) to create a compendium of short stories inspired by the varied moments the band experienced since the release of A Mad & Faithful Telling (Anti-, 2007).

Like many bands, DeVotchKa spent much of their early years traveling the highways and byways searching for gigs and a musical direction. As time went on, the band began to foster important musical collaborations with the unequivocal Calexico and the seminal gypsy punks Gogol Bordello. DeVotchKa's first big break happened when Nic Harcourt, former music director for KCRW, introduced his listeners to a then unknown rock band of worldly sounds on his daily radio show, "Morning Becomes Eclectic". Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton, who were listening that day, stumbled upon the sound for their movie, "Little Miss Sunshine". A critical and box office hit, the film was nominated for the Best Picture Oscar and, for DeVotchKa's soundtrack, a Grammy.

The little band from Denver was suddenly internationally admired, headlining large venues and performing at practically every major music festival, from Coachella to Lollapalooza. After years of toiling in obscurity, the band was selling out shows from the Fillmore in San Francisco to First Avenue in Minneapolis, with breakout performances at Bumbershoot and Austin City Limits Music Festival. The love spread to Europe, which has become a yearly destination for the band. In 2011, DeVotchKa played a number of European and American festivals, including Glastonbury and a return to Bonnaroo.

"100 Lovers" is the album DeVotchKa had always wanted to make. "How it Ends" was recorded and mixed in only nine days. On "A Mad and Faithful Telling," the band had more time and conducted complex arrangements and experimental recording techniques. For "100 Lovers", DeVotchKa spent over a year defining their sound, taking multiple trips to the desert studio to craft twelve new recordings. The final product is the bands strongest album to date, filled with songs fans will love, songs to draw in new listeners, and exciting numbers that fit nicely into their rousing live sets. With the new album, DeVotchKa have achieved success carving their own singular sound out of the worlds of rock, opera, theater, dance, and film.

DeVotchKa is:
Nick Urata: Vocals, guitars, Theremin, trumpet, piano
Jeanie Schroder: acoustic bass, sousaphone
Shawn King: drums, percussion, trumpet
Tom Hagerman: violin, viola, accordion, piano
Clare And The Reasons
Clare And The Reasons
Clare and the Reasons call Brooklyn home, but after touring around the world extensively for their first two albums with Van Dyke Parks, My Brightest Diamond, and on their own, they needed a new setting - one that would make them see and hear differently. For 8 months in 2011 they lived in an apartment on Berlin's Bergstrasse, on the western edges of what used to be the East. They got a 1968 Schwalbe moped - model KR-51 - and sped around the city at a velocity the congested New York streets would have prohibited. While riding under the vast skies of Berlin, the city a blurred filmstrip of cobblestones, trees, and graffiti, they dreamed up the sounds of this new record. After months of writing under the influence of Berlin they packed up a van and drove to Haldern-Rees, a little German village, to record KR-51. In Oct-Nov of 2011, they recorded for long hours, in between bicycling in and around cow fields, under an unimaginable number of stars. The neighbors in the village brought the band homemade apple cake, and the sheep became familiar with the band "bahhing" at them in a strange New York accent as they walked past. The cows offered encouragement and fresh milk to the band.

Olivier fancies himself a goat farmer, from rural France, but instead he's a conservatory trained Parisian violinist and composer. Clare had a not-so-booming business of selling frogs by the side of the road as a child, and is the offspring of Geoff Muldaur. As a teen, Bob had the hair to prove he could play every note of Yngwie Malmsteen's guitar solos (yes, he can!). This picturesque mixture of personalities has formed music rich in imagery, resulting in their songs being featured in several films and commercials. They have shared the stage with Devotchka, Vic Chesnutt, St. Vincent, Nouvelle Vague and others. Highlights from their most recent tours are The Meltdown Festival in London's Queen Elizabeth Hall, Primavera Festival in Barcelona, Moogfest in Asheville, Pop Montreal, La Cigale in Paris, The Paradiso in Amsterdam (released as a live CD), Union Chapel in London, and three trips to play in the band's beloved Japan in just over a year.

Their debut album "The Movie" had a clear warm sound with a large string section artfully arranged by Olivier Manchon, recorded in an orchestral room and mixed to tape. Collaborators of great talent stepped in; Sufjan Stevens sang a duet with Clare and Van Dyke Parks played piano on one song. On their second album "Arrow", the band experimented with more electronic elements, brass, and a stacked approach. Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond) lent her voice to a song. The album was a stepping stone to their newest effort. KR-51 resided at the top a very steep hill for the band, a writing process filled with heartache, raw honesty, relentless practice, and a tireless willingness to throw things away. Clare studied the way Lotte Lenya delivered so convincingly, and you may hear the adventurous attitude of early Kate Bush in Clare's writing. The great James McAlister (Sufjan Stevens) played drums on the album, filling it with crunch and bang, driving the record. Clare and the Reasons are not interested in the easy way, they are interested in the musical way. In a world of sound banks and sequencers, an orchestra made up of members of the Orchestre de Paris materialized, and was recorded live in Paris, something Clare and the Reasons consider a miracle.

The band sunk themselves into a city of many histories, a city of concrete boxes and fluted columns. Those contrasts, at times stark and streamlined, at times grandly lush, show up in the 11 songs on KR-51. They carry the meticulous orchestration and innovative songwriting Clare and the Reasons are known for, while also carrying a little more sorrow, a lot more distorted guitar, and a little more darkness of heart. Clare, Olivier and Bob were given room to contribute what only they could as musicians, in the beautiful recording studio sprouted in the middle of a vast sea of farm green. Clare and the Reasons' third album, KR-51, will be released July 10th in North America, and July 3rd in Japan. This album is their Berlin.
Venue Information:
The Bowery Ballroom
6 Delancey St
New York, NY, 10002
http://www.boweryballroom.com/