Marissa Nadler: Third Time’s Another Charm

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Bumbershoot, Bumbershoot, Bumbershoot…blah, blah, blah. How about stepping outside the box of what every known human and their brother are doing in Seattle this weekend and instead, catch Marissa Nadler at the Sunset Tavern on Saturday night. My bet is that you won’t regret it.

Loved and revered by critics worldwide, singer and songwriter Nadler released her third album this month. Aptly named Songs III: Birds on the Water, it’s rated an 8.1 by Pitchfork Media. [#] Her two previous albums garnered high acclaim as well, Ballads of Living and Dying (2004) was called “”uncommonly lovely…hard to get out of your head,” by The Guardian [#], and The Saga of Mayflower May (2005) was named “enthralling” by Pitchfork, [#].

At our Third Anniversary party, I was graced with her CD to review before this weekend’s concert. The name sounded familiar, but little did I know how lucky I was to receive her album, free and clear. Nadler has one of the most beautiful, melodic voices I’ve heard from a female vocalist. Her folk ballads, which are peppered with bells, mandolins and synthesizers, span all the depths of human emotion–love, loneliness, death, pain and sorrow. Her lyrics are consumed with gloom and doom, dark moods and melancholy. Yet, I feel strangely peaceful and soothed while listening. It’s the type of CD I’d throw on during those rare calming moments in life–reading on rainy days inside with the heat cranked–or when your life requires a pretty little melody–working, writing, painting, or generally creating. My favorite track, “Sylvia,” currently is available to download for free from KEXP’s Song of the Day podcast for August 15th.

If you just can’t fathom missing the big acts at Bumbershoot on Saturday night, Nadler will be back in town September 20th with Peter Bjorn and John at The Showbox.

Jackie-O-Mother****er, Marissa Nadler and guests
Saturday, September 1st, 9 p.m. ($7)
Sunset Tavern
5433 Ballard Ave. N.W.

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