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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Damien Jurado - Maraqopa

Very seldom do I discover a new artist whom I know I will be listening to for years to come.  I am constantly discovering new music I enjoy, however I frequently comb over my newly discovered music, to never return to listening to the song/artist/album that briefly captured my ears.  The availability of music has brought a “musical ADD” to our generation.  We listen, get bored and move on, constantly in search, never quite satisfied.  A frequent question of music lovers from our generation is “will there ever be bands as renowned as bands the likes of the Rolling Stones or the Beatles?”  I would tell them no.  But that doesn’t mean there aren’t still great bands.  We may long for the glory and fame of bands from the past, arguing that the 60’s and 70’s were the greatest musical era, but I would argue our era of musical culture is equally as great.  We are the first generation with so much access and freedom to music.  We have the ability to be independent music lovers, forever sailing across the endless seas of new discoverable music.

My most recent musical discovery comes from a man, who has been around for nearly two decades, a true musician who has secretly released eleven studio albums over his 13-year career.  Indie folk singer/songwriter Damien Jurado has lassoed my ears, with his insanely good discography dating back to the mid 90’s, to his recent 2012 album titled Maraqopa. The album twists and turns in different ways, taking the listener on a musical journey while maintaining cohesiveness.  It varies from psychedelic jam rock songs reminiscent of The Black Angels or The Doors to confessional pop folk songs evocative of Elliot Smith to soft acoustic meditative songs similar to Nick Drake or Sun Kil Moon.  Jurado’s lyrics are captivating, deep, and spine chilling when combined with his thin but beautiful falsetto.  The entire album deserves an entire listen through, however, hightlights of the album include “Nothing in the News,” “Maraqopa,” “Working Titles,” and “Museum of Flight.”  The melancholy album will have a place in my heart as winter rolls around, playing as I struggle to see through my frosty window during grey, cold morning, winter drives.  Its gloomy sound however will warm me up, as Colorado native folk singer/songwriter Gregory Alan Isakov said at a recent show “sad songs make me happy.”

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