(a)spera, the fourth solo album from Mirah, is the long awaited follow-up to 2004's highly acclaimed C'mon Miracle [KLP160]. Known for her explorative approach to her own brand of independent music making, Mirah's voice now brings us a new vision of the truths of our times. The songs on (a)spera strike a bold path across a landscape of dynamic and varied melody forms. Mirah's strongest asset, her sincerity and the care she takes in placing herself within her music, is offered without compromise.
This brave trek through a fragile ancient forest unfolds revealing the destruction wrought by cruel conquest, recalls the relics of a love never realized, and decries the loss of ancient wisdom. We sing for death and the living which stays alive, navigate our relationship to our ceaseless wants as resources disappear, hold on strong to love in a sinking world.
Again teaming up with Phil Elverum (The Microphones, Mt. Eerie) for 3 of the 10 tracks, she also enlisted the engineering prowess of fellow Portlanders Tucker Martine (The Decemberists, Sufjan Stevens, Laura Veirs) and Adam Selzer (Norfolk and Western, M. Ward) to complete this beautiful voyage. Featured musicians include Chris Funk (of The Decemberists) and Tara Jane O’Neil.
The album holds many surprises within its undulating reverie. String sections shimmer in the opening track “Generosity” and in the impeccable “Education”; a relentless fist pounds against a soundboard in the darkly powerful “The World Is Falling Apart”; “Shells” offers a breathtaking vantage of Kane Mathis' masterful playing of the mandinka kora; a street party emerges in full swing from the galaxy of Mirah's heart in “The Country of the Future”; unexpected turns are taken in “The Forest”; horns burst forth as quickly as they retreat back into the starscape on “The River.” Kalimba, hurdy gurdy, bongos, horns, instruments for all worlds, all times.
(a)spera the album, as well as the Latin from which it takes it's name, is hopes and difficulties linked inseparably, as we all are.
- The World Is Falling
- Country Of The Future
- The Forest
- Gone Are The Days
- The River
- Bones & Skin
- While We Have The Sun