Breathe Owl Breathe – a new-to-some-of-us trio from East Jordan, Michigan – has trouble, it seems, comfortably fitting in. They have that trouble in the most beautiful, dreamy ways imaginable. Vocalist Micah Middaugh’s smooth baritone – at times evoking The National‘s Matt Berninger, sometimes Roxy Music‘s Bryan Ferry, but mostly channeling Nick Drake – perfectly meanders over the soft, almost magical musical constructions Trevor Hobbs, and Andréa Moreno-Beals like a late-night conversation, creating its own atmosphere as the words roll out of his mouth.
They’ve just released “Passage of Pegasus” – their sixth album in their near-ten-year history – on October 15th, full of music that travels across genders and styles – mostly soft and folky, but also cacophonous and mystical – bringing to mind Nick Cave as well as Bill Callahan. And it’s always smart. “Silent Movie Reel,” which you can stream below, starts off with an almost pop-folk feel, and grows into a soundtrack to an epiphany in a quiet bar. “Explorer” is a tango-esque tune that evokes the off-kilter world of Napoleon Dynamite. Take a look at the video below to see for yourself.
We’re lucky enough in these parts to be on this iconoclastic band’s tour, which – following their true self-guided and ultra-independent nature – stops in some perfectly unusual venues: Friday night’s show – October 25th – is scheduled at the Leon Gallery on 17th Street, and the following night’s Boulder show takes place at Kelly’s Barn (here’s a map). Further proof of their self-driven charisma can be seen in the fact that the Boulder show – $15 suggest donation at the door – is a benefit for Sound Circle Eurythmy (and, by the way, donations of $25 or more gets you a pack of cards).
They’ve also hand-printed each cover for “Passage of Pegasus,” truly making each one a piece of art. You can read some more critical accounts of their music on their booking publicist’s site, PitchPerfectPR.
Get into one of these shows – and this time you can really tell everyone else you actually were there back in the day….
Stream “Silent Movie Reel” below:
Catcht their video for “Explorer,” here: