Contest: Win Caspian Concert Tickets
Do you live in Los Angeles? What are you doing in two weeks, on Thursday October 8th? If the answer is not already “I’m going to see Caspian at Club Bahia” then I have some good news for you. This is your chance to win a pair of tickets to see Caspian at Club Bahia (mere footsteps from my old apartment) on Sunset Boulevard by Dodger Stadium.
If you are unfamiliar with Caspian (first Swan Fungus reference: 2/4/07) you should be. The post-rock band formed in Massachusetts back in 2004 and have put out a slew of great bordering-on-classic records for the past eleven years. The first I heard, You Are The Conductor remains one of my favorite post-rock records of the aughts. Following on the heels of luminaries such as Explosions In The Sky, Mono, and Mogwai, theirs was a familiar sound but with room for growth. The Four Trees cemented the band as one of the better “modern” (remember this was back in the mid-late 00s) American post-rock groups. Although I didn’t hear Waking Season when it was released, it’s a fantastic breath of fresh air. Somewhere around this time (edit: three times: March 2009, October 2009, and early 2010) Ian’s band shared a stage with Caspian in New York. I paid closer attention to the release of Waking Season and the EP Hymn For The Greatest Generation. I enjoyed both immensely. Now, just about three years later, Caspian has returned with Dust And Disquiet, and I’ll be damned if it’s not their best studio effort yet.
The band sounds heavier than on past studio albums, and this set of compositions is more nuanced and better paced than any they’ve set to tape before. The ‘B’ side in particular (“Echo And Abyss”, “Run Dry”, “Equal Night” and “Sad Heart Of Mine”) could be the best of any Caspian record to date. “Sad Heart Of Mine” was the first song leaked by the group in advance of the LP’s release, and for good reason. It’s the length of a pop song at four-minutes, thirty seconds and yet it encompasses all the tenets of an epic post-rock tune. The vocals on “Echo And Abyss” and “Run Dry” signify a departure from the fully-instrumental sound that has dominated their recorded output to this point. A band cannot progress without experimentation, and the singing on Dust And Disquiet gives me hope Caspian will continue to stretch the definition of post-rock in the future.
The New York Times (!!!) and Under The Gun are both streaming the album in the days before its official release on September 25th. You should check it out, and then pick up a copy of the double LP from Hello Merch.
And, yes, on October 8th, 2015 Caspian will be performing live here in Los Angeles at Club Bahia. I’ll be there. You should be there too. If you want to win two tickets to see the show, all you have to do is e-mail me (evan AT swanfungus DOT com) your full name and your favorite post-rock record. I’ll pick one person at random and you’ll have your name (plus 1 guest) added to the list for the show. Pretty easy, right? Good.
In the meantime, check out “Sad Heart Of Mine” and tell me you’re not geeked about hearing this live. It would have been a perfect fit for an episode of Friday Night Lights, right? I’m spinning it on vinyl right now while enjoying a farmhouse ale called Rara Avis from Monkish down in the South Bay. See:
Caspian – Sad Heart Of Mine [MP3]
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