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TORRES

Torres

Thirstier

    Torres’ fifth album Thirstier pumps the miraculous into the mundane. It is in open revolt against the gray drag of time, a searing and life-affirming eruption of an album that wonders what could happen if we found a way to make our fantasies inexhaustible. What if we got whatever we wanted and still wanted it, endlessly, with no threat of boredom and no danger of depletion? What could we become if we let ourselves grow incandescent with eternally renewing desire?

    Since releasing her self-titled debut album in 2013, Torres the stage name of Brooklyn-based rock musician Mackenzie Scott has used her pointed lyricism and disarming vocal presence to seek openings in the everyday, prying apart the walls of the real in search of escape. After a pandemic year that toggled relentlessly between numbing dread and active terror, Thirstier explodes the borders of imaginative possibility. It is Scott’s most exuberant and daring record to date, showcasing her in thrilling freefall.

    Recorded in the fall of 2020 at Middle Farm Studios in Devon, UK, Thirstier marks a turn towards a bigger, more bombastic sound for Torres. The anxious hush that fell over much of Scott’s previous music gets turned inside-out in songs tailored for post-plague celebration. Scott co-produced the album with Rob Ellis and Peter Miles, drawing on her experience self-producing the acclaimed 2020 LP Silver Tongue to push her music onto an even broader scale. Guitar-driven walls of sound, reminiscent of producer Butch Vig’s work with Garbage and Nirvana, surge and dissipate like surf in high winds, carrying Scott’s commanding voice to the fore.

    “I wanted to channel my intensity into something that felt positive and constructive, as opposed to being intense in a destructive or eviscerating way,” Scott notes. “I love the idea that intensity can actually be something life-saving or something joyous.”

    From the sparkling country romp of “Don’t Go Puttin Wishes in My Head” to the sour grunge bite of “Keep the Devil Out” and the unabashed, overflowing devotion of the album’s title track, Thirstier clasps together love songs from all angles. Romantic love, platonic love, familial love, self-love, and freeing spiritual love all commingle, all feeding one another and vaulting toward the horizon. Scott sings of love that never knows scarcity.

    “The more of you I drink / The thirstier I get,” she pronounces on the title track’s chorus a thesis statement for the album as a whole, and its resolute striving toward abundance. “Keep me in your fantasies / Even though you live with me,” she sings at the song’s climax, enclosing transportive, alchemizing desire inside the pedestrian without dulling any of its glow.

    “We’re always fantasizing about something that’s out of reach. That’s what a fantasy is. It’s something you can’t have. But I wanted to turn that idea around and ask, ‘What if your fantasy was the thing that you have, this endless loop of fantasy?’” Scott says. “It’s a way to be in this fantastical, magical realm forever. I want to make that space for myself. I want to create a reality where my day-to-day is actually my fantasy. That’s what I want more than anything.”

    With Thirstier, Torres clears the way to that wellspring and invites others to follow her there. “I’ve been conjuring this deep, deep joy that I honestly didn’t feel for most of my life,” she says. “I feel like a rock within myself. And I’ve started to feel that I have what it takes to help other people conjure their joy, too.”

    TRACK LISTING

    SIDE A
    Are You Sleepwalking?
    Don’t Go Puttin Wishes In My Head
    Constant Tomorrowland
    Drive Me
    Big Leap

    SIDE B
    Hug From A Dinosaur
    Thirstier
    Kiss The Corners
    Hand In The Air
    Keep The Devil Out

    Torres

    Torres

      Mackenzie Scott currently records and performs as TORRES. She was raised in Macon, GA and now resides in Brooklyn, NY. She was also voted class clown her senior year of high school, though you’d never know it.

      ‘TORRES’ is the self-titled and self-released debut album, recorded at Tony Joe White’s home studio in Tennessee, and originally released in 2012. Subsequent albums have been released on labels such as Partisan and Merge.

      TRACK LISTING

      A1. Mother Earth, Father God
      A2. Honey
      A3. Jealousy And I
      B1. November Baby
      B2. When Winter's Over
      C1. Chains
      C2. Moon & Back
      C3. Don't Run Away, Emilie
      D1. Come To Terms
      D2. Waterfall

      A person whose words are so potent that they cause the people and beings around them to vibrate is said to have a “silver tongue.” It’s apt, then, that Mackenzie Scott—who has spent the 2010s making boundary pushing pop music under her TORRES moniker—has chosen to call her fourth album, and first release on Merge, just that. Recorded at O’Deer in Brooklyn, New York, Silver Tongue is a full-scale realization of the world Scott has created over TORRES’ last few albums. Even when singing in more subdued tones, Scott’s voice is fervent, her lyrics stirring and unyielding as she draws from both the divine and the everyday. It’s also the first TORRES record produced solely by Scott. After having shared production duties on her first three albums, the latter two alongside PJ Harvey collaborator Rob Ellis, she found the process liberating: “I made exactly the record I want, and it feels very ‘me.’”

      Silver Tongue fastidiously chronicles the impulses that make up desire from the dreamy first blushes of infatuation through the slightly terrifying wonder that accompanies connection with another. In between, Scott wrestles with the highs and lows of what “being in love” might mean over heady guitars and swirling synths. While potent vocal hooks punctuate songs like the sparkling “Dressing America,” which combines New Wave glitter with hovering frustration, and the brooding “Good Grief,” which gently pokes at the idea of fetishized sadness, the knottiness lurking underneath reflects Scott’s realtime processing of her emotions while making the record. Silver Tongue’s musical world is vast and at times seemingly infinite. Edge-of-the-world synths add gravity to the vulnerability of “Two of Everything,” and refracted guitars offer a gnarled counterpoint to Scott’s increased determination at the end of “Last Forest.” On “Gracious Day,” one of TORRES’ most forthright love songs, Scott’s voice hovers over a starlit landscape in a way that transcends the mundane and enters the otherworldly as she sings. TORRES’ music has long navigated the space between the physical and the metaphysical, and Silver Tongue faces that conflict head-on, examining the ways in which the actions of others can stir up deep-seated feelings and seemingly alter the space in which one exists.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Barry says: Silver Tongue is a triumph in many ways, not only musically but with the thematic intensity of the pieces on offer tempered beautifully with a playful optimism shining through. Scott's voice is as effecting as ever, and clearly is only getting better. Lovely stuff.

      TRACK LISTING

      SIDE A
      Good Scare
      Last Forest
      Dressing America
      Records Of Your Tenderness
      Two Of Everything

      SIDE B
      Good Grief
      A Few Blue Flowers
      Gracious Day
      Silver Tongue

      Torres

      Three Futures

        Torres is the creative alter-ego of Brooklyn-based Mackenzie Scott. In describing the album, Scott says it “is entirely about using the body that each of us has been given as a mechanism of joy.” The 10 original tracks on Three Futures embrace ecstasy, desire and indulgence rather than self-denial, and exude this idea via immersive music. Mechanized grooves are placed at the forefront, providing a framework for perforated electro-pop static, harsh gothic / industrial textures, and insistent Krautrock motifs.

        For Three Futures, Scott reconnected with producer Rob Ellis (PJ Harvey), who worked on TORRES’ last album Sprinter, to record in Stockport and Dorset. David Tolomei (Beach House, Future Islands) mixed the album.

        STAFF COMMENTS

        Barry says: Innately listenable synth-pop / indie goodness on this newest one from all-round bon oeuf and songwriter extraordinaire Torres. It's a heartfelt and beautiful distillation of sexuality, companionship and brilliantly effusive melodicism. Would listen again.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Tongue Slap Your Brains Out
        2. Skim
        3. Three Futures
        4. Righteous Woman
        5. Greener Stretch
        6. Helen In The Woods
        7. Bad Baby Pie
        8. Marble Focus
        9. Concrete Ganesha
        10. To Be Given A Body

        Adam Torres

        Pearls To Swine

          ‘Pearls To Swine’ maps Adam Torres’ complicated history as a songwriter and musician: it’s the sound of someone who discovered the value in his own devotion to music and how songs and writing are extensions of his own journey. He embeds his own folklore within his high-lonesome sounding, deeply felt and moving brand of folk music.

          ‘Pearls To Swine’ was recorded over eight days in January at Austin’s Cacophony Recorders, which overlooks the Colorado River valley. Working alongside co-producer and mixer Erik Wofford (Bill Callahan, Black Angels, M. Ward, Okkervil River), Torres chose the analogue route, recording and mixing directly to tape to allow for more finality and less overthought. This method in turn lends a natural, warm and almost magical realism atmosphere to the songs - like a high stakes live show captured in a fantastical setting.

          The core rhythm was captured live and augmented by a few overdubs and Torres is joined on the album by the players in his band: Thor Harris (of Swans; on conga drums, vibraphone and percussion), Aisha Burns (violin) and Dailey Tolliver (bass / piano), with drum kit performances by Matthew Shepherd and Rodolfo Villareal III.

          TRACK LISTING

          Juniper Arms
          Some Beast Will Find You
          By Name
          High Lonesome
          Morning Rain
          Daydream
          Outlands
          Where I’m Calling From
          Mountain River
          City Limits


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