Damien Jurado Visions of Us on the Land
Published Mar 21, 2016Visions of Us on the Land, the third instalment of Damien Jurado's concept trilogy that began with Maraqopa in 2012 and was followed by Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son in 2014, concludes the veteran, Seattle-based singer-songwriter's haunting, soft-psych story about disappearances, parallel realities and universal truths.
The 17 songs here are an expansive set in which Jurado's imagined protagonist searches for meaning in fictional times and places. Somewhere between "Mellow Blue Polka Dot" and "ONALASKA," though, the album's mood-altering ability starts to take effect, and by the time "Orphans in the Key of E" and "Kola" roll around, it's unclear where the ghostly atmosphere begins and ends and whether that's you, Jurado, his avatar or someone else entirely in the polaroid.
Visions of Us on the Land combines made-for-TV sci-fi soundscapes, Americana, pop, rock and indie-folk with thundering percussion, psychedelic synth, gospel choir and distorted guitar in a sonic palette that charms and mystifies. Produced by Richard Swift (the Shins), the record sounds and feels like an epic, forever-in-the-making demo that was so good they just released it as is. (Secretly Canadian)