Stellar Toronto synth-pop trio with new Jagjaguwar LP, Familiar Touch
3939 N. Mississippi Ave.
Portland, OR, 97227
Doors 8:00 PM / Show 9:00 PM
This event is 21 and over
It's been almost three years since DIANA released their critically-acclaimed LP, Perpetual Surrender, but the wait for new material has come to an end with the release of their most recent single "Slipping Away." Their first release since their debut, the track comes from sessions that will make up DIANA's second album, and the enthusiastic response to the track has already marked the as yet unnamed LP as one of the most anticipated releases of the fall.
DIANA's Kieran Adams has described "Slipping Away" as a song about self-discovery, which has been something of a recurrent theme for the band in the time since the release of their first album, a period during which they have, according to singer Carmen Elle, been "learning how to be a band." The album was among the most celebrated releases of 2013 but, while the band's members had been involved with other projects prior to DIANA (Elle touring as a member of Austra, and Joseph Shabason playing saxophone for Destroyer), the record was the effort of a band that barely existed, DIANA having essentially been formed as Perpetual Surrender was being written and recorded. The album was conceived as a one off recording project, a constructive way to use studio time that Adams and Shasabon had on their hands, and the excitement that greeted "Born Again," the first track released from the album, was completely unexpected, propelling them to a place they had never planned on going.
"That the first single got the attention that it got was really sudden and surprising to us" says Elle. "At that point we'd never played a show or jammed or anything. We made a record in a really staggered way, where I only joined the band at the very end, and then we were suddenly getting emails from record labels who wanted to sign us. We put a song on the internet and people went fucking nuts, but that wasn't supposed to happen at all."
For Adams the experience was equal parts exciting and enervating, as he and his bandmates attempted to harness the momentum that had been generated by music they had no idea how to play live. "It was a big shock, and then we were purely responding to that for a while," he says. "We didn't have an opportunity to figure out what was natural to do. Everything felt very stressful because it wasn't coordinated at all and we were just trying to catch up and figure out how to move forward."
The release of the LP, the attention it received, and the touring that followed, were in a sense the band's foundational experience, and in the time since, DIANA have, for the first time, had a chance to reflect on who they are as a band. The deliberate approach they have taken to these sessions was informed by that period of introspection, resulting in a process that Elle describes as "very architectural" -- a process of building frameworks around which they could explore ideas that more often than not would obviate the need for the structures that underpinned them.
"It's like the ship of Theseus," says Adams, "where piece by piece the whole ship is replaced and at the end the question is: is it the same ship? Do the pieces that have been taken away somehow leave a mark? Those frameworks impart a tone so perhaps the resonance of that tone is still there even after the pieces are gone. That's very much what it was like working on this record. We had to find these songs."
Nicholas Krgovich is a 29 year-old Vancouver-based songwriter and multi-instrumentalist best known for his work with NO KIDS, GIGI, P:ANO and MOUNT EERIE. He has been releasing records under various monikers since P:ANO's acclaimed chamber pop debut "When It's Dark And It's Summer" in 2002, which has led to his work with the girl group inspired GIGI, the icy displacement of the r'n'b informed NO KIDS and most recently to the singular pop dreams released under his full legal name NICHOLAS KRGOVICH. Even though the material is often wildly diverse there is a unmistakable sense of Krgovich's deep commitment to exploring the endless possibilities of pop, a discerning ear for sonic detail and quite often an ambition that wilfully borders on the absurd.
With songs that owe as much to the Great American Songbook as to perennial favourites like Sade, Prefab Sprout and The Blue Nile, Krgovich has been spinning rich compositions out of obsessions with Old Hollywood grandeur and Mullholland Drive-style mystery, which create a dreamland where palm trees cast impossibly long shadows, courtyard swimming pools glow at night, and washed-up movie stars haunt the streets looking for love. With a musical universe comprised of intricate vocal melodies, lush orchestrals, layers of analog synths, slinky funk guitars and tight rhythms of both the human and inhuman variety, Krgovich has been busy putting the finishing touches on his upcoming solo debut LP titled "THE LONG HOLLYWOOD BEAT" due for a Fall release this year.
He has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe with his various projects and has shared the stage with the likes of Dirty Projectors, Mirah, and frequent collaborator and bandmate Mount Eerie. In between recording and touring he has participated in a residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts, written a one-act musical for the PUSH Festival, covered Lover's Rock in its entirety, given a lecture on Extreme Sports at Trampoline Hall, contributed songs to various film and television productions and taken his dog Sally out for countless walks around the neighbourhood.
$10 ADV / $12 DOS
Mostly Standing / Limited Balcony Seats