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Follow up to 2012’s album, Passage (Secretly Canadian). Past media support from NPR, FADER, Stereogum, NME, Pitchfork, etc…. While many couples can trace the real time rise and fall of their relationship back to social media feeds and harried phone calls, Aleksa Palladino and Devon Church have channeled the highs and lows of their storybook courtship into something else entirely: the explosive, discomforting confessionals of Exitmusic. The mercurial project started the year they got married (2004) and all-but-imploded during their recent divorce, but not before the duo wrapped its most fully realized collection of beautifully damaged music yet titled The Recognitions.
It wasn't easy, though, for the band has always had to balance its writing and recording sessions with Palladino's career as an actress in such acclaimed television shows as Halt and Catch Fire, The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire, Storytelling and Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. "Our relationship finally cracked when Aleksa took a break from recording to work on a film in Iowa," explains Church. "It takes place on a lake so deep, indigenous people believed it had no bottom, and was a portal to the spirit world. When Aleksa returned from shooting, I could tell immediately something major had shifted.
She described an experience of standing up in a boat on the lake and seeing her reflection in the water, and having the realization that we had only been living on the surface of life—that there were fathomless depths to be explored if we were able to set each other free." That feeling makes itself known right from the very beginning of The Recognitions, as "Crawl" abruptly shifts from a sinister-butsubdued intro—think: Beach House re-scoring Suspiria—to a full-on exorcism, a fearless, fang-baring fight for one's life that leaves a trail of blood, sweat, and tears behind. Things slow down slightly amid the quivering strings, bold shuffleboard beats, and minor-key melodies of "Iowa," but there's no denying what a wildly expressive diary entry this album is by its end. That goes for everything from the bittersweet piano balladry of "The Distance" to the queasy rhythms and delirious hooks of "Criminal." Aleksa is presently filming a role alongside Robert De Niro on Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman while Devon Church is working on a solo record.
04. Gold Coast
05. To The Depths
06. I’ll Never Know
08. Trumpets Fade