Espers! at Diana Worthem, Transfigurations
I have been waiting a long time to see espers. In fact, when writing this piece, I sat on the patio of the Admiral for hours drinking bourbon and writing. and listening to I & II.
Espers: Crisp but fuzzy
Hailing from Philadelphia, a city ripe with artistic and musical talent, Espers achieves a sense of familiarity with their music, the feel of an aged photograph in one’s hand, a recurring dream. The lo-fi feel of their self-titled 2003 release is a study in contradiction, well-mixed but still raw, crisp but fuzzy. Brooke Sietinsons, Greg Weeks and Meg Baird are masters of duality, achieving both indulgence and affliction. Delicate vocals from Baird and Weeks, surprising string arrangements and a lack of traditional percussion combine to create a nostalgic and ephemeral end, an exquisite cascade of harmony. In fact, other than percussive elements created by flute, recorder, keys and stringed instruments (everything from dulcimer, autoharp, bass, violin, cello, and viola to traditional six- and twelve-string guitars both plucked and bowed), the only real percussion comes from finger cymbals and chimes.
After releasing a record of cover songs entitled The Weed Tree (2005), their second record of original material, II (2006), feels darker, and, still achieving the duality of their 2003 release, a slightly more electrified sound. The use of a buzzing, droning tone under many of their arrangements pushes a vibration through the layers, creating a full-bodied effect, and with the addition of Otto Hauser, Helena Espvall, Chris Smith and an even wider range of instrumentation, their ability to be extremely versatile and maintain a distinct style endures.
— Lydia See
here are some of my fav shots from the Espers show, and you can click HERE for a slide show of ALL ESPERS SHOTS or HERE for a slide show of ALL TRANSFIGURATIONS uploaded thus far. (begins with Espers)
ALSO: while you do that, you could stream some tracks from the show from my friend Andrew’s Blog