The Bowery Ballroom
Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun

Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun

Doug Paisley

Fri, May 2, 2014

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Bowery Ballroom

New York, NY

This event is 21 and over

Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun
Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun
Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun begins with “Crater”, a ragged anthem that erupts with
frayed guitar and thundering rhythm. Dallas and Travis Good’s trudging riffs light the low-slung growl of Gord
Downie:
Hello there / Gentle Son / A crater / We’re creating!
“Crater” is an arrival: the mission statement of a young band unhinged, igniting ten songs of visceral punk rock
exultation. Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun is a spirited exploration of the darkness
surrounding daylight, a rallying cry from the Secret Museum of Mankind:
Crater! / Getting crushed in our dreams / Or in our dreams / Doing all the crushing
Downie’s words burn in unison with the charging Sadies, the mantra of a band forged out of primal necessity. This
album is a vital, reckless, and ecstatic moment, gleaming with the proud imperfections of a group discovering its
voice.
It came together urgently but slowly, after the long-time Toronto friends first recorded together for Lake Ontario
Waterkeepers in 2006. Fleeting sessions over the next seven years yielded finished songs in immediate,
alchemical takes. Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun is the action of first-thought-bestthought.
The project’s namesake, “The Conquering Sun” fuses The Sadies’ rusted psychedelia with Downie’s humble,
volatile wail. Mike Belitsky’s roiling drums, and Sean Dean’s sure, standing bass spur the band through uncharted
desert-scapes.
Working the fugitive dust / Under the conquering sun / Nature, please be good to us / Under the conquering sun
Each song brims with energy, electricity embellishing a simple, rustic core. Acoustic inflections are cached in the
album’s array of fiery environments, staggering in its balance of ferocity and craft.
Downie cries out possessed on “It Didn’t Start To Break My Heart Until This Afternoon”: a pulsating blast of brash
guitars and fuzzed-out gnarl.
Drive it like we stole it / Through the snowflakes, into the cold of the sun
On “Budget Shoes”, guitars shine over the tumbling bedrock of desolate but hopeful imagism. Downie
writes in a universal voice, with a chorus taunting shadow from light. On “Los Angeles Times”, nations
gather under that conquering blaze, singing unanimous poetry of promise and provocation:
Raise a glass of hope / Raise a glass of liberty / And a glass of something else / May we be at ease with
ourselves!
The Sadies’ effortlessly invoke this primitive emotion, intuiting Downie’s themes with rollicking instrumental
passages. On “Devil Enough”, Downie’s solemn musings are liberated by The Sadies’ roving plainsong; sobering
internal sentiment brought to life with the flame of improvisation:
You’re making me drop things / I can’t hold my cup / My state of being / Isn’t what it was / The light the light / And
my eyes adjust / What’s for sure is Devil Enough
“One Good Fast Job” sneers like a siren, blunt guitars circling Downie’s snarl. “Demand Destruction” pops with
environmental pressure, coaxing an answer to a nuclear dilemma:
And as the sun went down behind the shadow / Of this invisible war / You say, “Is this accident ever over
anymore?”
Gord Downie, The Sadies, and The Conquering Sun
Album Biography –
Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun spans depths and ages in its relentless halfhour,
before concluding on an only note of reprieve. “Saved” dwells in the light of darkness, capturing
our silent vibration of debt to the source. The album’s last moments glint in the rapturous calm of
collective awe:
You say nothing can be saved / It all goes away / Darkness falls and colours fade / And the music gets
so loud it flaps your pant legs
Gord Downie, The Sadies, And The Conquering Sun boils with hope and irreverence; toils with fire
as a tool and a curse. This is the combustion of brotherhood and dissent: music of wisdom and
innocence:
It is the work, day is your word, night is the glue.
Doug Paisley
Doug Paisley
Doug is a plainspoken oracle of the highest water, an old-fashioned reporter of the heart; the truth that comes out of his mouth flows like the proverbial mountain creek but hits like the proverbial avalanche. And these are the sort of proverbs you were forced to forget the moment you were born. You need reminding, we all do; everytime you take a punch you need to be reminded of the sun and the moon, and the earth and the sea, and other transient states. Doug reminds us of what we're made to forget. He's been through the dark places, walking, riding, driving. It ain't always about the way out. More often it's just about the way on. He traces out those pathways with just a curl of his lip, and that bow-and-arrow picking, and words of elemental elegance. And a steady gaze - I haven't known Doug all that long but I don't recall ever seeing him look away from anything.

"One of the year's best singer-songwriter albums" - Rolling Stone
"A quiet wonder" - New Yorker
"It’s a record of subtle beauty, of a soft ache, the kind that seeps right into you and, before you know it, it’s settled deeper than you’d have thought possible upon the first spin." - Popmatters
"An anti-star is born" - Mojo
"This is a musician, you instinctively feel, who's in deep... There's something sure-footed and ageless about Paisley's simple, acoustic-and-piano songs, lent further authenticity by an old-school voice that drifts easily between folk and country. At times he's like '70'sJJ Cale, all husk and gentle intonation, at others with the earthy chill of Hoyt Axton and Will Oldham" - Uncut
Venue Information:
The Bowery Ballroom
6 Delancey St
New York, NY, 10002
http://www.boweryballroom.com/