Monday, June 29, 2009

Wovenhand Announce Fall '09 North American Tour to Support Critically Acclaimed CD "Ten Stones"

David Eugene Edwards’ Wovenhand (former frontman of 16 Horsepower) will return to the road in the Fall with a fourth string of North American tour dates that begin September 4th in Seattle and end October 10th in Bloomington, IN. The touring line up will be: David Eugene Edwards - guitar, mandolin-banjo, vocals; Ordy Garrison - drums; Pascal Humbert – bass

Wovenhand’s critically acclaimed fifth album, "Ten Stones", was released in September 2008 on Sounds Familyre Records. The record, co-produced by Daniel Smith of Danielson, was recorded at the label’s New Jerusalem Recreation Room in Clarksboro, NJ, as well as at Dust Bowl Studios in Glade Park, CO. In the words of Robert Browning, Wovenhand heralds "another greater, wilder country" on Ten Stones and grazes in yet stranger pastures on its fifth release with Sounds Familyre. Songs were finessed by guest artist Emil Nikolaisen’s (Serena Maneesh) driving guitar and co-engineering, the rumbling vibrations of 16 Horsepower bandmate Pascal Humbert on electric and double bass, the incisive drumming of Ordy Garrison, and the soulful guitar of Peter Van Laerhoven. On “His Loyal Love,” Elin Smith, also of Danielson, adds guest vocals to Humbert’s melody. These sophisticated musicians— many of whom share co-writing credit with Edwards—freshly
illumine his considerable vocal range and masterful song craft.

Here’s a link to a performance on NPRs "Tiny Desk Concerts”

Like a welcome draught from a bottomless well, Edwards sings ten untamed and mercy-drenched songs for thirsty listeners on "Ten Stones". From the jarring folk of 'White Knuckle Grip', to the eerie bossa nova of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s 'Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars', to the fiery foot-stomper 'Not One Stone', the album forms a song-cycle that is singular in its breadth and eclecticism. Flanked by the haunting strains of the bandoneón and the drones of the double bass, Edwards’ lyrical inversions stitch symbols into a tapestry of peaceable and hellish imagery—horsetails, honeybees, and bird wings meet flaming battles and barbed wire to proclaim sin’s devastation and the sweetness of redemption. The music of Wovenhand is utterly unique, dizzying those who encounter it, with turnings and lashings of shadow and light. Press response to date have been ecstatic:

“Don’t come to David Eugene Edwards looking for a catchy melody to whistle. If there’s something getting stuck in your head while listening to his austere, harrowing Americana, it’s the cutting edge of a heavenly archangel’s flaming sword. Ten Stones finds the songwriter adhering to the stylistic template he’s been refining since his days fronting 16 Horsepower. Edwards unleashes his chilling signature holler, foregoing traditional melodies in favor of a near-chanted rock liturgy about Old Testament judgment (“Not one stone / Atop another will stand / This weary melody stands / The host of heaven descends”) and humanity’s moral decrepitude. If this new record departs stylistically from his massive catalog in any way, it’s the infusion of crunching, distorted guitar. His previous solo records under the Wovenhand moniker felt more foreboding than explosive, the gathering of clouds tar-black and heavy, threatening but never quite lashing
the parched earth below. Searing guitar riffage on Ten Stones’ opening track “This Beautiful Axe” offers a sonic facsimile to the fire that cascaded down from heaven, singing the hair off Elijah’s arms and consuming both altar and sacrifice when he confronted the prophets of Baal. Edwards is similarly unafraid of using pyrotechnics to testify on behalf of his one true God."
Jason Killingsworth/Paste October

"Much has been made of Edwards’ Nazarene preacher grandfather, one source of the vibrant Biblical imagery threaded through his songs. It is somewhat less known that Edwards had another grandfather, an itinerant entertainer who traveled from town to town with a trained bear, and who may have been just as influential. From him, Edwards learned about Native American myths and legends, which are just as present in his songs. You can hardly listen to more than a line or two without coming on an animal, the horse of “Horsetail”, the birds that swarm through ‘A Beautiful Axe’. And then there are the rhythms, far too physical and celebratory for even the most unencumbered church gathering. ‘Kicking Bird’’s beat is communal and transporting, embellished with group yells and pummeling toms, and surely drawing from Native traditions. It is grafted—or perhaps grows naturally from—a foundation of American traditional instruments, not just guitar,
bass and drums, but banjo, piano, and accordion, yet it is far wilder and purer and more exciting than most Americana. This album...should establish David Eugene Edwards as one of the truly original and compelling artists in American rock right now.”
Jennifer Kelly/Pop Matters

“Having been highly influenced by his grandfather, a Nazarene preacher, Edwards used memories of his sermons as lyrical wormholes, ushering decidedly gospel-themed sheens into his songwriting. Ten Stones weaves seamlessly through reverb-heavy, atmospheric crescendos and sweeping tribal imagery, held down by Edwards' slickly gruff vibrato and knack for leaving just enough space in the movements for you to realize you're being crushed by something totally immersive. Reports from the road have indicated that the live Woven Hand experience is not unlike a religious one, despite the lack of any overt saints-and-sinners aesthetic in recent years. It could simply be the result of the evolved avenues through which Edwards imparts his lyrical themes. Either way, when a band has the capacity to simultaneously thrill you and creep you out, it's most definitely worth keeping an ear—and mind—open.”
Ryan Prado/Portland Mercury

“David Eugene Edwards, modern descendent of several respectable touring bands such as 16 Horsepower, has finally come into his own as Woven Hand, a dramatic, driving departure tinged with gothic Gregorian monk-like chanting and dark Appalachian undertones. A sound that refuses to be classified simply as ‘evil bluegrass,’ it's so tempting that you won't even notice Edwards is singing about God most of the time. Backed by virtuoso-caliber touring musicians and still toting along that concertina, Edwards is still capable of the electrifying live shows that established him in the murky waters of mid-90's alternative.”
Raechel Sims/Seattle Weekly

The grandson of a Nazarene preacher, Edwards dropped out of a Colorado high school to play music. He is known for an immense personal humility—a contrast to his stark lyrics about the wretched state of humanity, although he is the first to tell you that he is singing to himself. This paradoxical nature inspires such formidable listeners as Flemish choreographer and filmmaker Wim Vandekeybus, who based the score of the dance production “Blush” on the 2003 Wovenhand album Blush Music (Sounds Familyre). Blush Music was preceded by 2002's self-titled album and marked the first of two collaborations with Wim Vandekeybus. The second work with Vandekeybus, Puur, (Glitterhouse Records) was released in 2006 and followed the 2004 Consider the Birds (Sounds Familyre) and the 2006 Mosaic (Sounds Familyre). "Ten Stones" renders a beautiful encounter with healing, suffering, and sorrow. “Not one stone/ atop another will stand,” sings Edwards as creation
lies motionless, paralyzed in the canyon of time. Then, as all great artists await a time when the pinnacle of their craft will be caught up in greater glory, he sings: “This weary melody ends/ The host of heaven descends/ Down beneath this bleeding ground/ Behold the lamb.”
WOVENHAND TOUR DATES (More to be Announced)

9/4/09 – Chop Suey – Seattle, WA
9/5/09 - Berbati’s Pan – Portland, OR
9/6/09 - X-Fest (Skamania County Fairgrounds) – Stevenson, WA
9/29/09 – Waiting Room Lounge - Omaha, NE
9/30/09 –Vaudeville Mews – Des Moines, IA
10/1/09 – Empty Bottle – Chicago, IL
10/2/09 – Musica – Akron, OH
10/4/09 - La Sala Rossa – Montreal, Canada
10/6/09 – The Bell House – Brooklyn, NY
10/7/09 - B Sides at Messiah College - Grantham, PA
10/8/09 - Johnny Brenda’s – Philadelphia, PA
10/9/09 - Your Inner Vagabond – Pittsburgh, PA
10/10/09 – Russian Recording – Bloomington, IN

No comments: