Reviews:: Damien Jurado Now That I'm In Your Shadow

Damien Jurado is one of those artists that is always around, I just never seem to talk about him. I'm not sure if we've even posted on him before (so I'd wager we haven't), despite the fact I've been listening to him for years. The thing is, other than describing him as a talented singer/songwriter, it's hard to put Jurado's talents into words.

Without sounding like an acoustic zealot, I have trouble detailing the beauty of his work. He's got a unique ability to use sparse arrangements to shape his lyrics, without losing the honesty of the emotions he wants to portray. Instead of relying on studio tricks and layers, he prefers to throw in the the perfect instrument at the perfect time (like the harmonica on I Am Still Here).

His new album, Now That I'm In Your Shadow is his first with a full time band, but adding Eric Fisher and Jenna Conrad (her beautiful harmonnies on Denton Tx leave me speechless) doesn't mean the album is full of upbeat, rocking numbers. As the gentle strings start the opening track, Hoquiam, it's obvious the band adds to the reflective tone of Damien's work, as opposed to detracting from it.

The first single Secretly Canadian is offering up - What Were the Chances - is a beautiful song (with an ironically happy back beat), unfortunately the misery of hearing an adulterer reflect on his doomed relationship is precisely why (despite his amazing abilities to transport the listener to a moment in time or a certain emotion) he is often left in the shadows. His characters and tales aren't just your standard depressing loved and lost ditties, instead they explore the deepest pains in human nature (he lay there bleeding on the floor, my mother beside him cries 'dear lord, someone shot my boy.').

The title track is a powerful admission of submission, laden with beautiful timbre drums, cymbal crashes and haunting strings. This album is well worth the investment, but sadly, it will probably pass with little fanfare or recognition. Judging from the title, that is exactly how Damien prefers it to be.

MP3:: What Were the Chances

@ 1:29 PM, dani k kicked the following game:

have you heard him perform any of these tracks live? do. seriously.


@ 10:39 PM, Jenken kicked the following game:

I saw him for the first time recently and I was mezmerised. The lyrics, the music... Pure genious. And Jenna Conrad.. beautiful and talented.. Plays a mean Cello.


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