When Chris Cheveyo abandoned his heavy instrumental post-rock band towards the end of 2010, he culled his old habits and made a fresh start with Rose Windows, a Seattle-based sextet that drew upon everything from American folk to West Saharan guitar rock, from pentatonic proto-metal to traditional Persian music, from the darker corners of California's early psych scene to the hazy atmospherics of contemporary drone artists. It was a risky era for this sort of bold new ventureâ€"there was a lot of talk of austerity in 2010. People were upside-down on their mortgages. Gas prices were high. Many of the new musicians of the Great Recession were solo bedroom artists, laptop producers, and lo-fi aficionados. Rose Windows 2011 debut, The Sun Dogs, was a brave record exploratory, diverse, and lush. It didn't fit in with the escapist pulse of indie dance music, or the retrograde scuzz of garage rock, or the bucolic nostalgia of the breezy new folk scene. Yet it's theme of the everyday blues that capitalism and it's hit man, religion, bring on all of was certainly apropos of the time. Now it's 2015, everyone is grumbling about urban development, and we can't build enough condos to satiate the demand for overpriced real estate. Rose Windows escaped Seattle's rapid growth by heading to Bogalusa, Louisiana to record their sophomore album at Studio in the Country, re-enlisting producer Randall Dunn (Earth, Cave Singers, Akron/Family). Geography inevitably leaves it's mark on musicians, and there was a certain character to the Deep South" with it's tradition of the delta blues and the swampy riffage of New Orleans that resonated with the band. There was also the allure of isolation. While The Sun Dogs was comprised of multiple recording sessions, guest musicians, and months of sonic tinkering, their sophomore album was a focused, deliberate, streamlined process. Both the location and the isolation can be heard on Rose Windows. If The Sun Dogs sounded like an American rock band drawing upon ideas from the Old World, their self-titled record sounds like an American rock band delving deep into the underbelly of their own heritage. The Sun Dogs sounded like a band feeling out the parameters of their abilities. Rose Windows sounds like a band that's honed in on their strengths and fortified their approach. Whether you see a bright future or impending calamity, whether you thrive on the pulse of the big city or pine for the solace of nature, Rose Windows perfectly encapsulates the human experience within our world in the 21st century.
Strip Mall Babylon
Come Get Us Again
The Old Crow
A Pleasure to Burn
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