Saturday, October 04, 2008
Peter Broderick is like the Swiss Army Knife of musicians; compact, elegant, multipurpose. What sets him apart is his restraint. With an arsenal of talents at his disposal, he prefers to reveal only one or two at a time.
With Home, Broderick may have performed his most impressive feat yet: breathing new life into the most pedestrian arrangement in modern music. He turns the open-mic night connotations of guitar and vocal on its ear with layers of vocal washes, x-acto finger-picking figures, and his deceptively simple compositional style.
You’d think working with as many as five different bands in recent history (Efterklang, Horse Feathers, She & Him, Loch Lomond and Norfolk & Western) simultaneously wouldn’t allow Peter to pursue any kind of solo career. Likewise, his easygoing, unassuming demeanor might lead you to believe he didn’t have aspirations being accessible and available to lend a musical hand. But in late 2007 a steady stream of solo instrumental releases on respected labels Type and Kning Disk has all but established Broderick as the young composer / pianist / string player to watch.
Home is a collection of folk songs recorded at the end of 2007 and beginning of 2008. In late 2007, Peter Broderick toured all around Europe with the Danish ensemble Efterklang, playing violin with them, and opening the shows as a solo act. His recorded work up to this time had been primarily instrumental, but as he began to play live shows, he discovered he also had a passion for singing. And so, when he had a break from touring at the end of the year, he set out to make an album that was the opposite of his other instrumental, piano and string based recordings. With Home he has made and album with neither of these instruments. The result is an album based around layers and layers of vocals, and guitars. Recorded in various places in various parts of the world, it is an album about finding a home. Written, performed, recorded, and produced by Peter himself, and mixed with his good friend and sound wizard from Efterklang, Mads Brauer.