Turnover

CS + Soda Bar presents

Turnover

Elvis Depressedly, Emma Ruth Rundle

Friday, October 27, 2017

7:00 pm

The Irenic

$16.00 - $19.00

This event is all ages

Turnover
Turnover
Virginia Beach's Turnover are four dudes (Casey + Danny + Eric + Austin) who have (somewhat quietly) been slinging the underrated emo pop hits for a bit now. But the band appears to have bent the genre box because they're now veering away from such emotive, instantly accessible riffs and nudging their melodies (still super accessible) towards easy, breezy, 100% chill territory. I'm blasting them right now (truth) and this listener is left feeling mighty content in the Land of Ahhh. You can come hang here too. There's plenty of room.

If you're not familiar with these guys, you can mine Turnover's past all you want on the World Wide Intrasphere (they've released a couple of EPs and one full-length, if we're agreeing to decide that eight songs = a full-length, and I think we are). But I suggest you begin your Turnover listening experience with their present and work your way backwards because the songs I've heard from their upcoming new album, “Peripheral Vision," are DOPE. That's D-O-P-E and yes, Virginia Beach, there is hope in it. Sometimes.

Speaking of that new album, it comes out May 5th in the Year That I'm Writing This on Run For Cover (a fine label home to the following fine bands that I have also written kind words about: CSTVT + Elvis Depressedly + Modern Baseball + Pity Sex + Whirr + probably some more but I'd have to go back and check... and there are no rearview mirrors here at Rockness HQ... why do you think I never update my band profiles after I write them). You should probably pre-order it or something because it's going to be a smash. And I should probably mind my own business.
Elvis Depressedly
Elvis Depressedly
In many ways, new alhambra is an auditory homage to what has shaped lead singer Mathew Lee Cothran’s life. Its title, as any hardcore pro-wrestling fan will recognize, credits the Philadelphia arena that birthed its most legendary and extreme version of it, and the use of samples from wrestling shows and late night televangelists serve as a reference to his upbringing. The album was characteristically made with outdated equipment and limited by only one microphone, with Mike “Dr. Vink” Roberts playing an essential role on bass that enriches the rockier resonation in comparison to elvis depressedly’s previous releases. Cothran and Delaney were constantly on the move during the recording process thanks to their new found career freedom, but none of it takes away from new alhambra fully texturized shift toward brightly melancholic noise-pop inspired by Cothran’s favorite un- sung heroes such as Waterboys, Prefab Sprout and Emperor X.
Emma Ruth Rundle
Emma Ruth Rundle
It isn’t unusual for artists to glean inspiration from emotional upheaval, transcending pain through a kind of mental osmosis, so that the turmoil in their lives provides the fuel for their artistic fire. Only some, however, lay bare the open nerves of their suffering, inviting the listener to experience raw emotion with them, in real time. By exposing vulnerabilities within themselves so fragile that their music itself somehow embodies their own personal discomfort, they create an auditory experience verging on total catharsis, for artist and audience alike. Emma Ruth Rundle is just such a musician. Her second solo album, Marked for Death, mines feelings of loss, defeat, heartache and self-destructiveness to emerge with the most honest and compelling accomplishment of an already prolific career.

A more adventurous production than 2014’s solo debut Some Heavy Ocean, the eight compositions on Marked for Death, helmed by engineer/co-producer Sonny DiPerri, emphasize dynamics and vocal melodies, variable tuning, and a dense layering and texturing of guitars. Nevertheless, fear and self-doubt linger in the shadows of Rundle’s mind, providing an incessant counterpoint to her ambitious talent and sultry, albeit de-emphasized, allure. As she explains, “There is intentionally nothing to hide behind here, but at the same time I’m terrified of revealing myself.” Clarifying this she continues, “The subject matter is largely about being defeated and shrunken into the base human themes of love and loss. It’s a far cry from high art. It’s very much from the dirt.” Exemplified by the candid, unglamorous cover portrait, the album makes a persuasive argument for its creator’s utter helplessness in the shadow of defeat. And though a potent dose of dark, hypnotic rock every bit as satisfying as her work with Marriages and Red Sparowes, Marked for Death’s most resonant element is Rundle herself, settling-in to her role as singer/songwriter. Her rich voice, alternately jostled and cradled by the sounds conjured from her guitar, feels more present, perhaps even more deliberate, than ever before. Written over the space of a few months holed-up at The Farm, Sargent House’s desert outpost/recording studio outside Los Angeles, the songs on Marked for Death reflect the investigative, occasionally improvised nature of writing and, eventually, recording at the site. The studio’s dirty electricity necessitated going direct for most of the guitar tracks. “Because of the direct input set up,” Rundle explains, “I had a lot more time to get very textural with the electric guitars, so there are many layers.” With unlimited time and space, discovery itself became part of the songwriting process.

Opening track “Marked for Death” stirs quietly at first. Its past-tense treatise on doomed love and the despair of abandonment soon blooms, however, into a cascading murmuration of guitar and strings, its towering, epic presence characteristic of much of Rundle’s work. “Protection”, perhaps not coincidentally, constructs a wall of volume around itself. The flashes of Rundle’s vulnerability and haunting melody of her vocals in turn spark great washes of guitar noise that mushroom into existence like some sonic thunderhead. Dusted with acoustic guitars, “Medusa” spins a churning landscape of reverb and shadow, a broad canvas for the impassioned brushstrokes of her voice, while “Hand of God”, a resolute contemplation on living with shame, incorporates a sleepy kind of blues that flickers momentarily before fading away. “Heaven” and “So, Come” grapple with themes of suffering and yearning for the past, transforming from furtive whispers into overdriven burners, and back again. What begins as the album’s most restrained moment, “Furious Angel”, withers only momentarily from the specter of dying love, the quickening floor toms - present across much of the record - eventually splashing their way through a layer of crystalline cymbals. The dark thrum of stripped-down closing track “Real Big Sky” is accompanied by one of Rundle’s most bittersweet lyrics, and a breathtaking performance. The only song on the album included in its original demo form, its unexpected resolve delivers an abrupt, sobering finish.

Complemented by the timeless, cinematic lens of the album’s production, Marked for Death finds Emma Ruth Rundle emerging as a performer of naked intensity. She shapes vast, evocative landscapes of sound, combining them with lyrics of devastating candor. Self-determination and resiliency, disguised in this case as coming to terms with overwhelming defeat, are key aspects of her personality. Transforming pain into works of great beauty makes her the compelling artist she is.
Venue Information:
The Irenic
3090 Polk Ave.
San Diego, CA, 92104
http://theirenic.com/