FATHER JOHN MISTY, JENNY LEWIS, JULIEN BAKER, DAN EDMONDS
100 Garrison Rd
Toronto, ON, M5V 3K9
Doors 2:30 PM
This event is all ages
Four years have passed since the release of Trouble Will Find Me, and to the outside world it might have seemed like the members of the National spent that long interim working on everything but new National songs. But in September 2014, two months before the band headlined the 20,000-seat O2 Arena in London, Aaron passed along the first set of musical sketches to Matt. “We really didn’t take much of a break,” says Matt. “We started working on this record the minute we finished touring the last one. The only break we took was from the constant pressure we put on each other.”
“We didn’t feel like rushing it,” says Aaron, who produced Sleep Well Beast. “People thought the National went away, but we were just working on ideas.” With members now living in five different cities, the band made an extra effort to get together in the same room – sometimes in studios in upstate New York, or out in Los Angeles. “We’ve always worked on demos together,” explains Bryce. “But this time we were actually in the same physical space doing it.”
“When we all lived in Brooklyn we rarely did these kinds of week-long sessions” says Scott. “This time we got together for long stretches, just to mess around and experiment without deadlines or distractions.”
In February 2015, Aaron and Bryce convened for a series of writing sessions in an old church in Hudson, New York. Then, in the spring of 2016, Aaron completed work on his own residential studio, Long Pond,in upstate New York, where most of the album was recorded. “It’s the first time we have had a space of our own where we can keep all our instruments and work on songs any time, day or night,” says Bryce. Aaron adds, “The space was designed specifically for the band to make this album, with an open plan and no control room so that everyone could be wired up and playing all the time. The idea was to loosen the reigns and formality of our past recording process and allow for experimentation from beginning to end.”
Bryan describes it, “Getting drum sounds in a previously untested room was a seriously fun exercise in trial-and-error learning, in a group setting. Time disappeared, the sun set, and then the massive frog population in Aaron’s pond started singing.”
While the studio served as the home base, the band also sought outside collaboration. As part of a weekend residency at Funkhaus in Berlin, Bryce and Aaron invited guests to plug in and play along with instrumental tracks from the National’s work-in-progress. Bryce says, “We spent a week in East Berlin in this beautiful 1950’s communist-era recording studio with tons of musicians from very different backgrounds, just letting them listen and react to the music we’d been cooking for so many months within the band.” “It was a very interesting way to collect new sounds and process existing ones,” says Aaron. Late in the process the band convened an orchestra in Paris to record Bryce’s orchestrations for the songs before returning to Long Pond to mix the album.
There are songs on Sleep Well Beast that are instantly recognizable as the National, but others are much harder to classify. The lyrics are about “trying to come clean about the things you’d rather not,” says Matt. “Some of it’s about marriage, some of it’s about my relationship with Aaron and the band, some of it’s about train tracks and dancing.” Guitar solos appear like never before, yet on some songs guitars account for only a tiny fraction of the music. “It was important that we genuinely explore new territory and risk falling on our faces, or not make a record at all,” explains Aaron. “This album feels complete to me.”
FATHER JOHN MISTY
Father John Misty is the brainchild of singer-songwriter Josh Tillman. Tillman has released three widely acclaimed albums – Fear Fun (2012), I Love You, Honeybear (2015) and his most recent release, Pure Comedy, his Grammy-nominated album (2017). Father John Misty has also recently contributed to songs by Beyoncé and Lady Gaga. As for his most recent album, Pure Comedy it is a complex, often-sardonic, and, equally often, touching meditation on the confounding folly of modern humanity. The album has earned Father John Misty placement on over "50 Best of 2017" lists from Entertainment Weekly, The Guardian, The Sunday Times, Rolling Stone, Stereogum, Pitchfork and more. The reception to Pure Comedy also led to a series of incredible performances with Saturday Night Live, Austin City Limits, the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Tonight Show and Late Night with Seth Meyers. He recently completed a wildly successful tour in support of the Pure Comedy, and will release its follow up in 2018.
One of the most celebrated and respected performers of her generation, Jenny Lewis got her start as the dynamic frontwoman of influential LA group Rilo Kiley in 1998. She has since released three albums under her name, most recently 2014’s The Voyager. In addition to her solo work, she was a member of The Postal Service, part of the duo, Jenny and Johnny, as well as the lead vocalist for Nice As Fuck.
Lewis has collaborated with Beck, Elvis Costello, Ryan Adams and M. Ward, among others. She has also written music for films such as the musical/drama, Song One, starring Anne Hathaway and Very Good Girls starring Dakota Fanning and Elizabeth Olsen.
Julien Baker's solo debut, Sprained Ankle, was one of the most widely acclaimed works of 2015. The album, recorded by an 18-year-old and her friend in only a few days, was a bleak yet hopeful, intimate document of staggering experiences and grace, centered entirely around Baker's voice, guitar, and unblinking honesty. Sprained Ankle appeared on year-end lists everywhere from NPR Music to The AV Club to New York Magazine's Vulture.
With her new album, Turn Out The Lights (out Oct 27th via Matador Records), the now 21-year-old Baker returns to a much bigger stage, but with the same core of breathtaking vulnerability and resilience. From its opening moments -- when her chiming, evocative melody is accompanied by swells of strings -- Turn Out The Lights throws open the doors to the world without sacrificing the intimacy that has become a hallmark of her songs
When Hamilton, Ontario roots rockers Harlan Pepper called it a day in late summer 2015,
their decision left more than a few folks disappointed. After two acclaimed albums and tours
that included appearances at Toronto’s Massey Hall, Ottawa’s National Arts Centre, and
Winnipeg’s Burton Cummings Theatre, it seemed as though the quartet was making all the
But an artist’s journey invariably takes many unexpected twists and turns, and the band’s
front man Dan Edmonds’ journey ultimately launched him into unknown territory. The first
results of these explorations have arrived in the form of his debut solo album, Ladies On The
Corner, with its rough-hewn musical exterior perfectly complementing Edmonds’ clear-eyed
and evocative storytelling skills.
Whether you call it Cosmic Canadiana or any other currently hip term, the bottom line is that
Ladies On The Corner heralds a new beginning for one of this country’s unique young voices.
Firmly rooted in the past, but with a vision squarely aimed toward the future, Dan Edmonds
is ready for his close-up.
Dan has recently opened a new recording studio called Fort Rose, in his home town of Hamilton
and is currently working on a new record, as well as producing records for other artists like,
Blunt Chunks and Delta Days.
$89.50 - $139.50
FOR MORE EVENT INFORMATION: NTL.COLLECTIVECONCERTS.COM
General Admission - $89.50
VIP - $139.50
The National has partnered with PLUS1 so that $1 from every ticket will go to saving lives, revitalising communities, and transforming global health through Partners In Health Canada. www.pihcanada.org