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THE BALLET

Brigid Dawson & The Mothers Network

Ballet Of Apes

    Tip-top of our osmosis list is the first quiver of tunes from Brigid Dawson and her newly minted Mothers Network: wise warnings dyed in dark hues, knotted and hard-won torch songs from the edge of a turbulent sea, bittersweet balladry spun in defense against evils familiar and unknown. Lovely though it may seem from a distance, the striation of loss quicksilvered throughout provides weighty balance to her contralto lilt. Those familiar with her harmonic counterpoint from her time in Thee Oh Sees or in OCS know she can belt as well as lullaby but there’s a fresh and smolderingly heavy swing in her step on display here that we mightily dig.

    “Ballet of Apes” tapestries together sessions that read like a who’s who from outside our own castle walls - in Australia with Mikey Young (Total Control/Eddy Current Suppression Ring), in San Francisco with Mike Donovan (ex Sic Alps), Shayde Sartin (ex Fresh & Onlys/lifetime ringer) and Mike Shoun (ex Oh Sees/Peacers), and in Brooklyn with instrumental heavy-weights Sunwatchers - and the results are spellbinding. At the focal point of this maelstrom, our lady, as if illumed by candlelight, intones, pleads, consoles - white magic perhaps but it carries with it the anodized tang of blood. 

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Dinked Edition LP Info: • Exclusive Magenta Coloured Vinyl.
    • Exclusive Folded 12 X 24” Poster (Folded / With LP).
    • Signed Inner Sleeve.
    • Numbered Sleeve.
    • 500 Only.

    Ballet School

    The Dew Lasts An Hour

    A fresh, vibrant take on the lush, emoting tropes of Eighties pop and rock but sounding resolutely 21st Century.

    ‘The Dew Lasts An Hour’s diverse influences place Ballet School at the forefront of pop’s new alternative.

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    2xLtd CD Info: Strictly limited edition 2CD version (bonus CD shrinkwrapped with standard album) featuring unreleased content, available exclusively to independent retailers (200 copies for the UK & Eire).

    I Blame Society is the third album from New York trio The Ballet and their first for new label Fortuna POP! Unashamedly “sissy” and explicitly queer, The Ballet marry the DIY queer ethos of the Hidden Cameras with the wry poeticism of The Magnetic Fields to create literate, infectious pop gems.

    I Blame Society is a continuation of the lyrical themes and songwriting style found in the band’s two previous self-released albums (Mattachine! [2006] and Bear Life! [2009]), though with slightly pared down arrangements and a nuanced production, which highlights songwriter Greg Goldberg’s strengths. Inspired by Stephin Merritt’s body of work, Goldberg draws from an array of pop artists and periods, from 60’s bubblegum to 80’s synthpop and 90’s indiepop, fusing these in sophisticated and novel ways which rewards repeat listening.

    Avoiding autobiographical or confessional modes, Goldberg nonetheless mines his own psychological constitution and intellectual interests to craft songs whose overt musical prettiness is often contrasted by a dark and complex subtext. I Blame Society addresses a number of queer themes, offering a nuanced and refreshing perspective on contemporary queer issues, subtly balancing queer melancholy with self-deprecating humour and stubborn utopianism. While some queer musicians shy away from articulating a connection between their sexuality and musicianship, The Ballet have often contended the opposite: that they are “a bunch of queers who just happen to be in a band.”

    Formed in 2005 by Greg Goldberg and Craig Willse (who are both professors and met whilst at graduate school) with Marina Miranda (who they met at a party), The Ballet are still going strong after eight years of pop magic, retaining their original line-up. That’s not to say they haven’t gone through some line-up changes over the years. Acquired bandmates Ginger Brooks Takahashi and Michael O'Neill left in 2007 to join JD Sampson in MEN. Indiepop luminaries such as Linton from The Aislers Set and Ramesh from Voxtrot have also made guest appearances on previous albums, as have Kaki King and Scott Matthew.


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