Monday, August 25, 2008

The Orange Spotlight

Taylor Altman Swimming Back (Sunnyoutside, Aug. 28th, 2008)

"Whenever grownups talk, it's always about nothing but always urgently important, ans then the laughter goes up in the little sparks that shimmer and fade." from "Fireworks"

Swimming Back is a story of youth and loss, the loss of a father and the loss of childhood. Filled with images of growing up on the East Coast, the swimming and the flirting, the laughter and tears, running from bees and hiding from reality. There is an ever present fear of adulthood, but the desire to the leap ahead. It took me back to the days among the corn and stars, dancing and playing games. Although my father was gone, the summer wind and the brightness of the grass stains kept my mind filled.

Taylor Altman shows incredible strength and restraint in this, her debut collection. A graduate of Stanford University, she displays an ability to capture a moment in time and guide the reader through every detail. Spending time in both New York and Boston, her work is filled with images of crisp Autumns and steamy summers. Never really escaping the ponds and pools that once filled her childhood, Swimming Back, is her journey back towards her youth, and now she is prepared for and aware of the life ahead. Here is what she had to say about the collection: "My father died of a sudden heart attack when I was four years old. That was almost twenty years ago, but it still haunts me. I felt like a whole world was lost to me, that a door had shut. Finding this door has been a long process of "swimming back" toward normalcy, toward comfort in a world where the people and the things you love most can be taken away from you for no reason whatsoever."

Donovan Quinn & The 13th Month Donovan Quinn & The 13th Month (Soft Abuse, Sept. 23, 2008)

To continue on the subject of loss, Donovan Quinn has crafted an album of loss, but a different kind of loss. His is a surreal heartbreak, a tender sadness that twists and spins into metaphors that echo and search for peace. This journey is amplified by Quinn's smooth delivery, which is wrapped in a haze of grit and mystery. As the seasons begin to change over the next month, this album will be a perfect soundtrack for the cool breeze that will begin to blow. Songs like "October Bride" and "I Have Seen the Season Change" will set the scene with Quinn darkly romantic sound.

The son of Dave Carter, bassist & vocalist for legendary 60's psychedelic group Country Weather, and named after Mr. Leitch, Quinn grew up on a horse ranch in Walnut Creek, CA and began writing songs at an early age. As half of the psych-folk duo The Skygreen Leopards, he begin to build a style and reputation for writing songs that are as melodic and beautiful as they are dark. This album expands that reputation and pushes him forward and closer to figuring it all out.

01. October's Bride
02. Horror & Fear
03. Sister Alchemy
04. Patterns on a Summer Dress
05. The Wind At Her Craft
06. Quarantine
07. They're Going To Pick Us Apart
08. Take the Cross Off the Mantle
09. Hollowed Candles
10. "Moose Indian"
11. Holy Agent (mp3)
12. Dark Angel
13. Heathen Honeymoon
14. I Have Seen the Season Change

No comments: