Posts Tagged ‘The Horizon Just Laughed”’

At the conclusion of the majestic Maraqopa trilogy, and four consecutive records with Richard Swift behind the boards, Damien Jurado decided to take the reins himself on the subtly orchestral and gorgeously melancholy The Horizon Just Laughed. That Swift would pass on mere months after the album’s release made the whole situation feel even more significant. Jurado and Swift immersed themselves in a psychedelic, hallucinatory world on the Maraqopa trilogy, but the horizon indeed just laughs, and fate stretches its legs out to trip you up, as though the borderline of their fantasy world had been watching with a detached amusement all along, waiting for our protagonist to return to a more sobering reality. When Jurado does step through the door, he finds himself back in a misty morning of a weary world where Charles Schultz and Charlie Brown exchange letters detailing their mutual late life struggles. Characters populate the album from front to back, showcasing Jurado’s beautifully empathetic and inspired vision of a world and its inhabitants more reflective of ourselves, and, as revealed on the hauntingly prophetic album highlight “The Last Great Washington State,” one with love and appreciation for what and who we have, while we have them, and afterward still.

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released May 4th, 2018

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Image may contain: one or more people, people on stage and indoor

When Damien Jurado toured his new album, The Horizon Just Laughed, he did so while wearing a variety of plain-color jumpsuits that were less Devo and more “I work in a factory.” Appropriate, anyway, as he’s been working like a factory worker for over twenty years now, steadily releasing album after album of hopelessly reliable nylon-string folk-rock that you could set your watch to. Good old fashioned American craftsmanship. Or something like that. Jurado’s music has been frequently taken for granted over time—it seems as if each album is warmly received and then moved on from—and that’s likely partially due to the fact that, from a distance, it can sound similar to what one might call modern mood music. It’s much more than that, of course, but a playful awareness of that perception is part of what makes “Percy Faith” one of Jurado’s best-ever written songs, it being named after the inventor of mood music, Mr. Percy Faith. The time-travelling saga is almost epistolary in nature—we’re dropped into the middle of what appears to be a letter directed at various semi-forgotten entertainers like Faith, Ray Conniff, and Allan Sherman—but “Stan” this is not. Jurado’s world is dreamy, sure, and you might not notice it at first, but the assembly line catches up to everyone eventually

Damien Jurado, “Percy Faith” from the album “The Horizon Just Laughed” out May 4, 2018 on Secretly Canadian