It’s been more than three years since the exemplary, Texas–based singer/songwriter Sam Beam – as Iron and Wine – put out a new studio record.
It’s out this week. Kiss Each Other Clean will be followed by a reasonably large American tour, stopping into the Trustees Theatre April 23. Tickets, $25, are on sale now at scadboxoffice.com (they’ll go up to $30 day of show).
Kiss Each Other Clean builds on the sonic mix – rich, California harmonies, spartan horns,‘70s synthesizer textures and the odd panpipe – of the last Iron and Wine album, The Shepherd’s Dog. Beam is an indie writer with little regard for trends – his music is honest and direct. That’s why he’s so cool.
In an early review of the new album, the U.K. Guardian had this to say: “Beam comes across as a latterday prophet, casting his gentle eye over capitalist, warmongering western society with sorrow and kindness. His eccentric experimentation does much to temper the earnestness of his endeavour – and makes you appreciate all the more the direct loveliness of piano ballad ‘Godless Brother in Love’ and the honeyed nostalgia of ‘Tree By the River.’”
Excitement continues to build for Savannah Stopover, the three–day (March 9–12) citywide spotlight on indie bands making their way to the big SXSW conference in Austin.
More acts have been announced, including Murder By Death, Amen Dunes, Astronautalis, Savannah’s Aux Arc, Gringo Star, Little Tybee, Reptar and Venice is Sinking.
The hefty full lineup is a solid cross–section of all genres of music, and it’s expanding every day. A full venue list – it includes most of the live–music clubs in town – will be announced shortly.
Meanwhile, festival passes ($45) are available now at savannahstopover.com (they’ll go up to $65 after the first 300). If there are tickets left for individual shows, they’ll be $15 at the door.
Savannah is ripe for a music festival like this one. It’s about time.
Some other stuff
• The SCAD Performing Arts Department will present La Traversée: The Promising Voyage, a multi-media dance piece conceived, directed and choreographed by Vincent Brosseau, Feb. 10-13 at the Lucas Theatre. Brosseau is a professor of performing arts at SCAD. His show (it means The Crossing) was inspired by stories of people who left their native land at the turn of the 20th century and came to America in the hope of finding a better life. Brosseau himself crossed the ocean 30 years ago from France.
• Our friends at Columbia City Ballet will be at the Savannah Civic Center March 12 with a fully staged production of Cinderella.
• Here’s a thought: We get wonderful windows into the world of independent film, via our many film series and one-off showings, but isn’t it interesting that many of the big award-season contenders - for example, Blue Valentine, Rabbit Hole and 127 Hours - have yet to screen at the Savannah multiplexes?