Promo photo by Marianne Williams.
There is an euphoric pleasure that can be discovered in Big Sir’s music. From Juan Alderete’s fluid and fretless bass, slithering smoothly over electronic snare hits and explosive percussion, to Lisa Papineau’s eerily enchanting vocal delivery, this electronic, experimental collaboration between The Mars Volta musician and occasional M83 vocalist, has grown since the days of its late ’90s inception.
Now the group returns with Before Gardens After Gardens, their forthcoming, third full-length, scheduled for release on February 7 through Omar Rodriguez Lopez Productions/Sargent House. The album, a culmination of darkly captivating, electro-pulse journeys, melodic bass and somber vocals, all intermingling with crescendoing pianos and sporadic, analog cacophony, is a testament to the duo’s enduring musical partnership. Such can be heard on “Ready On the Line,” the group’s first track from Before Gardens After Gardens.
Beginning with an infectiously poppy hook and accented explosions of hip-hop sounding whitstles and electronic claps, “Ready On the Line” shines delightfully, its sunny disposition contrasting against Papineau’s melancholic, Bjork-esque delivery. The shrill scream that comes at the end seems to embody the album’s overall atmosphere: an acceptance and embrace of the inevitable. As Papineau explains, “it’s an album of dance and celebration in death’s insistent embrace.”
The celebration features an array of guest appearances: from The Mars Volta’s Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Deantoni Parks, to Broken Bells’ Jonathan Hischke, and even performances by Money Mark Ramos-Nishita, and Jesus Lizard’s David Sims, Before Gardens After Gardens is mysterious and compelling, an adventure that only ends in satisfaction.
Listen to “Ready On The Line” below and download here.