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A generous serving of dark
Sunday, 01.03.2015, 20:20
oh what a night...
Sean Rowe (USA)
For all of you urban sophisticates, we’d like to introduce a musical superman who’s been known to live for weeks on end in the woods with just one trusted ally, his hunting knife. But, we’re rushing to say, he knows precisely what he’s doing.

Introducing Sean Rowe, musician and survivalist, born 1975 in Troy in upstate New York at the foot of the endless Adirondack mountains.  You might think that this beautiful and wild but also forever economically depressed part of upstate might have been the inspiration for him to sing. But it was really Otis Reddings’ «Open The Door» and some time before that, his uncle gifting him a guitar that set things in motion.

His style is alternative folk, one of his singles was titled «Mudfunk»…and his voice comes across as portentous and with a generous serving of dark. At one time he troubadoured from door to door of the homes of people he didn’t know and offered intimate house concerts. «I was kind of like a bearded traveling salesman, instead of peddling Hoovers, I was offering the emotion coming from my songs. As a stranger at first – but then I proceeded to drink the beer and eat the food of people I hadn’t previously known».

If that’s all it was, considering the title of his first album was «Magic»(2003). It earned him comparisms to Van Morrison and Leonard Cohen: «I wanted to lead the listeners way away down into an abyss where they could forget about it all.» In 2009, he signed with ANTI- Records which re-released the very fine «Magic». Then in 2011 he became a father and that may have propelled him to work on his second, the elaborate «The Salesman And The Shark» (2012).

This Rasputin from the untamed mountain forests of the Adironacks will bring «Madman» (2014) with him to our island. And that means 12 simply structured songs that clearly imply the influence of the driving guitars of the Delta blues greats R.L.Burnside and John Lee Hooker on one hand. And on the other, it’s the Southern soul of Otis Redding and Ray Charles. It’s all been filtered through the persona and life of an artist who has his heart placed right under the root of a tree. «When the road takes me to the other side of the world / Let a walnut tree replace me / Give my body back to the birds.» 

el Lokal