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Damien Jurado

Sometimes You Hurt The Ones You Hate

    Sometimes You Hurt The Ones You Hate by Damien Jurado is a gorgeous, richly diverse and compact album and his third full-length on his label Maraqopa Records. The eight tracks are heavy with emotion and feature a wide spectrum of Jurado's continuously developing talents as a songwriter.


    James Hoskins
    Neiman Marcus
    A Lover, A Balcony Fire, An Empty Orchestra
    Mr. Frank Dell
    Match Game 77 (Episode 1097)
    In A Way Probably Never
    A Buildings Kind Of Building
    I Was A Line

    Damien Jurado

    Water Ave S

      2022 promises to be a banner year for Damien Jurado. Not only does the year mark the songwriter’s 50th birthday, but it also sees the summer release of his 18th studio album, the impressionistic and tuneful Reggae Film Star. And hang on, there’s more: Sub Pop Records reissues Jurado’s debut full-length, 1997’s Waters Ave S. The work of a young artist driven by complex inner visions, the LP offers a fresh chance to examine how far Jurado has come in the 25 years since its release—but also demonstrates how much of his point of view and vivid scenecraft was firmly in place from the very start.

      A veteran of the DIY punk and hardcore scenes, Jurado had begun taking steps into the world of lo-fi home recording. But with renowned indie rock producer Steve Fisk acting as producer, Waters Ave S introduced Jurado to the independent music world, presenting a set of 13 songs that encompass odes to remote desert outposts, late-night conversations with Elvis, a purple anteater, and the great beyond. Though new to the studio, Jurado’s storytelling lens is well honed; these compositions are filled with characters wandering the psychic wilderness, flawed but nonetheless certain of themselves, or at least certain enough.

      Those only familiar with Jurado’s ambient-tinged folk or AM gold psychedelia will find the album more punky than expected, replete with post-punk basslines, electric guitars, and a youthful tenor to Jurado’s voice. But what’s most striking about the record is how fully-formed his world is, especially on songs like the lilting, drum-looped “Angel of May,” the sci-fi “Space Age Mom,” and mournful simplicity of the title track. Jurado was just getting started, but the path he’d follow seems laid out by Waters Ave S. 25 years later, it’s clear that the creative spirit that fuels this idiosyncratic and exuberant record is one that still propels Jurado to this day.


      1. Wedding Cake
      2. Angel Of May
      3. Treasures Of Gold
      4. Yuma, AZ
      5. The Joke Is Over
      6. Space Age Mom
      7. Circus, Circus, Circus
      8. Hell Or Highwater
      9. Independent
      10. Purple Anteater
      11. Sarah
      12. Halo Friendly
      13. Waters Ave S.

      Damien Jurado

      Reggae Film Star

        Reggae Film Star is Damien Jurado's 18th full length studio album and the second on his own record label Maraqopa Records 25 years since his debut album Waters Ave S. came out, Jurado is more prolific, driven and creative than ever. The twelve mystical songs on Reggae Film Star are gorgeously cinematic and feature a rich production and diverse sonic textures. Reggae Film Star was produced by Damien Jurado at Sonikwire in Irvine, CA, with invaluable help from the dream team of multi instrumentalist Josh Gordon and recording engineer Alex Bush. The album was mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.


        Meeting Eddie Smith
        Roger's Audition
        What Happened To The Class Of '65?
        Location, Undisclosed (1980)
        The Pain Of No Return
        Gork Meets The Desert Monster
        Day Of The Robot
        Ready For My Close Up
        Taped In Front Of A Live Studio Audience
        Whatever Happened To Paul Sand?
        Lois Lambert

        Damien Jurado

        What's New, Tomboy?

          What’s New, Tomboy? is an album that seeks respite in bare minimums and barren revelations: sometimes frail, sometimes affirming, sometimes wry, and usually a threadbare mix of all those sentiments. It could be considered Damien Jurado’s finest collection of music to date, with songs exuding the inviting warmth of a lone porch light gleaming amidst the disorienting darkness. Though more stripped and grounded in their execution, songs like “Sandra”, “Ochoa” and “Alice Hyatt” are generous and candid in their vocabulary, eschewing the sometimes abstruse imagery of Jurado’s previous releases. “There is no hiding on these tracks.” Though What’s New, Tomboy? is the first Damien Jurado record that ends with a question mark, he has never sounded more assured and content in giving up his ghosts: “I’m only living sentences // That were long before I got here.”


          1. Birds Tricked Into The Trees
          2. Ochoa
          3. Alice Hyatt
          4. Arthur Aware
          5. Francine
          6. Fool Maria
          7. When You Were Few
          8. Sandra
          9. The End Of The Road
          10. Frankie

          Damien Jurado has always worked fast, but In the Shape of a Storm came together with unprecedented speed. Recorded over the course of two hours one California afternoon, it’s Jurado’s sparsest album to date. Gone are the thundering drums and psychedelic arrangements that defined the trilogy of concept albums he made with his longtime collaborator and close friend Richard Swift. Gone even is the atmospheric air that hovered above his early albums for Sub Pop. Here, there’s only Jurado’s voice, acoustic guitar, and occasional accompaniment from Josh Gordon, playing a high-strung guitar tuned Nashville style, rendering its sound spooky and celestial. Though fans have long requested a solo acoustic album, the prospect never made sense to Jurado, until one day it simply did. “It just felt like it was time,” Jurado says. The idea of an unadorned album became its own medium in his mind, like a painter who sets down his brushes and instead opts for charcoal pencils instead.

          “There is nothing left to hide,” Jurado sings on “Lincoln,” which opens the record. It’s something of a thesis statement for these songs. Everything here is clear and laid bare, two-tone, like the drawing Jurado crafted for the record’s cover. Originally written for 2000’s The Ghost of David, “Lincoln” was shelved and forgotten about until Damien came across it on an old cassette tape. The discovery inspired him to go about gathering up songs that had never found proper homes. As a result, In the Shape of a Storm is like an archive of previously abandoned songs. Damien Jurado’s discography is filled with songs written as miniature movies, cinematic vignettes that capture people, the places they are from, and where they are going. In the Shape of a Storm is his first black and white picture. It’s both a snapshot of two hours in a California recording studio and a document spanning 19 years and a life of music. It is the sound of a singer pouring out possible futures and visions. “I believe songs have their own time and place,” Jurado says. For these ten, that time has finally come.


          Andy says: Voice, guitar and glorious song-craft. Damien distilled.


          1. Lincoln
          2. Newspaper Gown
          3. Oh Weather
          4. South
          5. Throw Me Now Your Arms
          6. Where You Want Me To Be
          7.Silver Ball
          8. The Shape Of A Storm
          9. Anchors
          10. Hands On The Table

          Like previous albums, The Horizon Just Laughed started with a dream – though that’s where things change, as they often do. It is Damien Jurado’s first self-produced album in a 20+ year career, more personal and more rooted than even his Maraqopa trilogy, as though after so much time on the road he’s stumbled upon his home.

          The album feels like a beautiful collage — its narrative pieced together through letters and postcards, with each part contributing to its greater whole, and providing snapshots of ones journey to find a sense of place and connection to a changing world.


          Barry says: Jurado just goes from strength to strength, and this continues that trajectory. Beautiful production mixed with his singular songwriting ability make for a spellbinding and nuanced ride.


          1. Allocate
          2. Dear Thomas Wolfe
          3. Percy Faith
          4. Over Rainbows And Rainier
          5. The Last Great Washington State
          6. Cindy Lee
          7. 1973
          8. Marvin Kaplan
          9. Lou-Jean
          10. Florence-Jean
          11. Random Fearless

          Over the weekend of August 21-22, 2010, not long after Damien Jurado and Richard Swift first collaborated to produce Damien’s 2010 record, ‘Saint Bartlett’, the pair hunkered down with a 4- track recorder and one Coles 4038 ribbon microphone to record a collection of cover songs that run the gamut from John Denver to Chubby Checker to Kraftwerk.

          The timing was perfect. On ‘Other People’s Songs Volume One’ one can see the scaffolding of what would become a creative turning point for the pair - later seen with the release of Damien Jurado’s ‘Maraqopa’, the first record in his Maraqopa trilogy - less than two years later. The opening drum hits of ‘Be Not So Fearful’, the falsetto vocals of ‘Sweetness’ and the Spaghetti-Western swing of ‘Radioactivity’ are, by now, hallmarks of the Jurado / Swift sound but ‘Other People’s Songs Volume One’ is a transitional fossil, a marking of the pair’s collaborative evolution.

          This is the first time ‘Other People’s Songs Volume One’ is available on CD and LP.


          Be Not So Fearful
          Hello Sunshine
          Sincere Replies
          If The Sun Stops Shinin’
          Follow Me
          Outside MyWindow
          Crazy Like A Fox

          Damien Jurado

          Rehearsals For Departure

            Seattle singer-songwriter Damien Jurado’s second album for Sub Pop, ‘Rehearsals For Departure’, is now available on vinyl and cassette for the first time.

            The album was originally released in 1999 and it has sold over 15,000 copies.

            The album boasts a sharper, more streamlined songwriting approach than his debut, ‘Waters Ave S.’, combining finger-picked acoustic guitar tracks with a number of full band songs.

            ‘Rehearsals For Departure’ was produced by The Posies’ Ken Stringfellow, who also played a variety of instruments on the album.

            LP format includes a digital download code.

            Damien Jurado

            Visions Of Us On The Land

            Providing the ideal entry point for neophytes and an intoxicating aural high for the faithful, Damien Jurado’s new opus extends the hot streak ignited by 2012s Maraqopa and its 2014 follow-up Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son. Cut once again with label mate and super producer Richard Swift at the latters National Freedom recording facility in rural Oregon, Visions of Us On The Land, out 3/18 on Secretly Canadian, completes the tale of an individual who has had to disappear from society in order to discover some universal truths. Today, we’re excited to share the song “Exit 353,” premiered by NPR Music.

            There was no grand scheme to make a trilogy at the outset. Exuberantly prolific, its creator simply wanted the first record to be “a quick snapshot,” says Jurado. “Maraqopa is this peaceful place I can go to in my mind. A little bit psychedelic, but youre not using substances. The brain is such a powerful thing. In that uncharted territory I was able to tap in and find this place. Which was called Maraqopa. Similar to the fictional towns in television or books.”

            Maraqopa the album introduced a character deliberately unnamed, intended to represent anyone feeling that way who stumbles upon the titular locale then gets into a car crash… which only frees him further. Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son. It picked up the narrative after the accident, in a commune inhabited by Silver Timothy, Silver Donna, and Silver Malcolm. Visions of Us On The Land journeys further into the subconscious mind, a symbolic road trip spotlighting the people and towns that our central figure and his travelling companion, Silver Katherine, encounter upon leaving the commune. Hence the capitalized track titles, alluding to real American locations refracted through ones third eye in the rear view mirror. Like all great art, its about life and death and love and freedom. A sonic map with no set destination, revealing more with each ride.

            TRACK LISTING

            1 November 20
            2 Mellow Blue Polka Dot
            3 QACHINA
            4 Lon Bella
            5 Sam And Davy
            6 Prisms
            7 ONALASKA
            8 TAQOMA
            9 On The Land Blues
            10 Walrus
            11 Exit 353
            12 Cinco De Tomorrow
            13 And Loraine
            14 A.M. AM.
            15 Queene Anne
            16 Orphans In The Key Of E
            17 Kola1

            Damien Jurado

            Brothers And Sisters Of The Eternal Son

              Damien Jurado’s ‘Brothers And Sisters Of The Eternal Son’ is the follow up to 2012’s critically acclaimed ‘Maraqopa’ and again features Richard Swift producing - the third time in which the pair have collaborated. 

              Expanding on the existential journey of its predecessor, ‘Brothers And Sisters Of The Eternal Son’ tells the story of a man who disappears on a search for himself never to return. The world of ‘Brothers...’ is birthed from the deepening partnership between Damien and producer Richard Swift. 

              Damien’s musical career began with the release of his debut ‘Water Ave S’ on Sub Pop in 1997. He went on to release three more records for the Seattle label before joining Secretly Canadian, a move marked by the release of ‘Where Shall You Take Me?’. 

              What’s evident on ‘Brother And Sisters Of The Eternal Son’ is that Jurado continues to evolve. In his own words he states “How I feel about, not just my songs but what happens in the studio... It is limitless.” 

              This deluxe version features a second disc of songs from the album as performed by Damien and female choir Sisters Of The Eternal Son.

              Damien Jurado


                At Richard Swift's National Freedom studios, the live-to-tape ethos allowed the songs on Damien Jurado's 'Maraqopa' to expand and retract like a great beast's breath. Every in-the-moment bell and whistle here is hung with a natural, casual care. And from this, each song offers up its own unique gift: the enchanting children's choir that echoes each line of Jurado's lament for innocence lost on "Life Away from the Garden"; the breezy bossa nova that begins "This Time Next Year" and rises as effortless as a smoke cloud into high-noon showdown pop; "Reel to Reel"'s wobbly, Spector-symphony and its meta themes; the wonderful falsetto vocal work Jurado pulls from himself on "Museum of Flight."

                The Seattle Times recently called Jurado "Seattle's folk-boom godfather," a praising recognition to be sure. But also a title Jurado might not yet be ready to accept. That's a title for someone who has settled. With each visit to National Freedom, Jurado is exploring, taking risks. He's not only freeing his songs. The gate is opened wide to allow us all into his once-isolated musical universe. One gets the sense he's just now hitting his stride.

                STAFF COMMENTS

                Darryl says: A really beautiful album, Jurado has really hit his songwriting peak with 'Maraqopa'. Intimate desert blues with a warm melancholic soundscape.

                Damien Jurado

                Saint Bartlett

                  "Saint Bartlett" opens up with a grandiosity yet unheard on a Damien Jurado album. It strips away the many layers of paint from the house down the street where we know Jurado has occupied for the last decade. The new coat is exhilarating. It makes the whole neighbourhood shine. It's a modest grandiosity; still homegrown. The mellotron swells, heavenly handclaps ring in stereo and big drums create a sky for the songs to fly in. And the words. Words spring forth from within the volcano of Jurado, full of hope. There's so much hope, in fact, that album opener "Cloudy Shoes" turns into a call-and-response with himself, as though it were a dialogue between two halves of himself.

                  'I wish that I could float up from the ground / I will never know what that's like'

                  Heavy stuff. Richard Swift's Spector-esque production is spot-on. He ferries Jurado across the river, where the metamorphosis occurs. He then ferries him back, and it is through Swift's lens that we see Jurado not as a folk singer, but as a mystic - somewhere between Van Morrison, Scott Walker and Wayne Coyne. "Saint Bartlett" was made entirely at Swift's National Freedom studio in Oregon, in just under a week with only Jurado and Swift as the performers.

                  Damien Jurado

                  On My Way To Absence

                    Damien Jurado is a man with a hand in the baskets of all the right fringe genres. He can be the storyteller who produced the alt folk masterpiece "Rehearsals For Departure" - one of Uncut and NME's Albums Of The Year - and the sonic pioneer responsible for "Postcards And Audio Letters", a music free album of telephone conversations, answering machine messages and boom-box Christmas recordings. As a result he's won a reputation as one of America's most adventurous artists and is regarded by his musical peers as a songwriter of immense capabilities. "On My Way To Absence" is the result of Jurado and long-time collaborator Eric Fisher locking themselves away for four months of musical polarity. Described by Damien as 'a tribute to jealousy', it's a collection of songs that sound as if they've been stoked in the fires of time - and captures, in a similar manner to the best of Nick Cave and Gillian Welch, a particular primal essence in the way a tale is spun. This is his great strength as a writer - the ability to find the quick truth, the good stuff, and then to sing it from his gut.

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