Tuesday, December 20, 2011

let's get dirty again

Oh my words, how excited was I last week when I saw a tweet from @thequietus announcing that 2012 would see the release of a new Dirty Three album. AMAZING!
This calls for a blogpost but be warned, this is a personal story :)

Back in 1998, I had become friends with chicago musician David Grubbs of Gastr Del Sol fame. David was touring Europe to support his very good solo album The Thicket and we bonded over our love of literature (he has an amazing knowledge) and my passion for Cassavetes films.
If you're not familiar with his work, which I will admit is not always easy listening, here's a digestable Gastr Del Sol track "Season Reverse"

So one day, I got an email from David telling me that his Australian mates would be playing in Belgium and that I was not allowed to miss them because they're fabulous and he had played the piano on some tracks from the new album. Sound dudes!  Turns out I had to do press for them on the day of their show as I was looking after the Bella Union Catalogue back then. The band turned out to be Dirty Three and they were opening for PJ Harvey, to support their sublime 4th album 'Ocean Songs'.
The fact that we had a friend in common started a connection and to this day i remember that press day very fondly as one of my favourite throughout my career. And it's always a joy to bump into them at festivals.

Here are Warren Ellis, Jim White and Mick Turner in action at the time. Set up the scene guys, low lights, cuddle up in the sofa and just follow the music...

In March 2000, they put out a mini album that inherited a great title: "Whatever you love, you are"
The opening track is probably my favourite Dirty Three track. I especially love it live, as Warren Ellis compensates the wordless music with stream of consciousness stories he tells the audience between the songs. Oh yeah Dirty three are an immense band live.
"Some summers they drop like flies", I find myself consumed by this song, the narrative, the seduction...it's like being at sea with the cold wind in your hair, it takes me places and I hope it will do the same to you.

In 2005, they released Cinder, an album on which they invited 3 friends to record vocals on their dreamy music. One such friend is Chan Marshall, aka Cat Power. Turner and White have toured extensively as her backing band. Jim White, the best drummer in the world, is still in her Dirty Delta Blues Band today.
The result of that collaboration is Great Waves

So...no new music since Cinder, since 2005 but now in 4 little months we'll have something to look forward to as the boys will be back in town with "Look Towards The Low Sun" and I can barely wait to be transported by this hairy baroque indie!

Before I leave you to your dreams, there's another collaboration that I want to write about, it dates from 2001 and is called In The Fishtank 7 ( Konkurrent's studio sessions). Our 3 troubadours joined forced with my other top band Low for 6 tracks of pure magic.
"I hear Goodnight"

I suggest you go buy their back catalogue, indie bands need you, right? And please go see them live but make sure I still have a ticket ok?

Sweet dreams

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