Double Door Inn
218 E Independence Boulevard
Charlotte, NC 28204
9:00 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013
FOLK / AMBIENT / ROCK/
$8 in Advance/
$8 @ the Door/
$2 Underage Fee/
Doors @ 8PM/
Show @ 9PM A tribute to two people who have influenced my life greatly but passed away before I had the chance to meet them. My grandfather and my girlfriends father, Abraham and Dan.
A review of "Dead & Yelling" by Anna Sullivan:
Simple does not necessarily mean boring. Nor must it mean uninventive, nor bland. The word “simple” sometimes adheres itself to the pleasant, essential “uncomplicated.” This is the use of the word best employed for things like comfort foods, street signs and, very often, music. Musically speaking, this is the "simple" Dan Abraham engages with in his recent, short album Dead and Yelling.
One of the key features of this particular, enjoyable kind of simple is the rawness. Abraham’s voice itself shows the best lack of refinement. For instance, on “Everyone’s Ok,” the final song on the album, his voice sounds far away and gritty, as if recorded on an old manual tape recorder. “I don’t wanna know why everyone changes,” he groans, with a grunge that almost lends itself to early punk, “I just wanna be.” Certainly too, these lyrics, like most others on the album, echo the uninvolved simplicity of the music he produces.
Abraham’s arrangement is equally uninvolved. Songs never contain more than a couple guitar chords layered with perhaps a short bass line, a light drumbeat, and gritty vocals, sometimes with a dash of eerie reverb. Consider “Loving It,” in which the mosquito-like whines of guitar mimic exactly the vocal notes Abraham performs. These, and a small, hissing hi-hat in the background, are enough to create the melancholy, electrified mood that is so alive on the track.
“Set in Stone,” finds Abraham using only a gentle guitar picking and two tracks of vocals; one close and soft, one far-away-sounding and ubiquitous. Still, there are no harmonies or dissonance. Both vocals sing the same words and the same melody. The three elements come together with a spark, though, creating a lost, wistful sound.
The lack of complication on this album does not create a lack of polish or interest. While the majority of Dead and Yelling seems to be composed of the basic ingredients of folk music—acoustic guitar and unpretentious vocals—there are still moments of clear 21st century influence. For instance, the Morse-code-esque blips of noise at the beginning of “Everyone’s Ok,” clearly electronically produced, or the use of layered tracks and loops throughout. Abraham’s music is without the bells and whistles, the giant neon lights of current music-making tools. Yet it retains that modern mixture of human ability and advanced production that creates such a smooth, swallowable sound.
The simplicity of this album is much like that of a perfect loaf of bread. It serves to compliment some greater, more complex and more satisfying main dish. Be that main dish tangled threads of emotion and thought, built up throughout the day, poised to unwind themselves against the accepting background of a soothing arrangement of voice and music, or perhaps the company of close friends late at night, discussing and furthering a relationship or idea; Dead and Yelling will amplify—but not distract—with its sounds of unadorned pensiveness. more >>>