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Blurt - Samantha Crain Readies Her “Songs”

With her debut full-length, Songs in the Night, Samantha Crain and the Midnight Shivers deliver a shudderingly beautiful unique batch of songs in a style that’s been described as “meshing freak folk with a deep-seated, dust-bowel soul.” The 22-year-old Shawnee, OK native’s haunting voice, well-chosen words and emotional depth ring true in a way that sets her apart from most artists of her generation. Picking up where her critically acclaimed 2008 Ramseur Records EP, The Confiscation, leaves off, we find Crain – a Choctaw Indian from Oklahoma who’s been described as a kind of distaff Neil Young – presenting each song with an unfeigned fervor as her voice rises and falls over the panorama painted by the Midnight Shivers and their roots-infused, fertile arrangements.

Songs In the Night plays out to wander confidently in the badlands where abrasive, jangly indie rock and smooth, whispery folk meet. Along with her band the Midnight Shivers (Jacob Edwards, Andrew Tanz and Stephen Sebastian), Crain recorded all 11 tracks in five days at Asheville, NC’s Echo Mountain Studios with producer Danny Kadar (Grizzly Bear, My Morning Jacket, The Avett Brothers), and the album captures the organic, rural feel of the sessions. Songs in the Night chronicles the fear Crain saw in herself and those around her who assumed that embracing health and clarity would, in turn, destroy every particle of poetry and each grain of ingenuity dwelling within them as artists.

In these songs, Crain finds inspiration to be found beyond the crutches of anxiety and self-contempt. For her, a soul removed from a dim and murky den is a breeding-ground for vision and artistry, set to realize its full potential. Songs In the Night is Crain’s account of this excavation. As the album unfolds, listeners can rest easy knowing they are not experiencing illusions and the band can be comforted with the reassurance that they delivered something that is genuine.

It’s due April 28 from NC’s Ramseur.

  • Posted on January 10