Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Bon Iver

BON IVER (Oct. 4)

In winter of 2007, musician Justin Vernon moved from Raleigh, N.C., to a remote cabin in rural northwestern Wisconsin. After leaving his band and breaking up with his girlfriend, Vernon needed some time to think. Days spent performing simple chores gave way to cathartic day-long recording sessions. After three months in solitude, he played the rudimentary recordings for friends and became convinced the songs were worth hearing. Vernon self-released the album as {For Emma, Forever Ago} under the moniker Bon Iver and a star was born.

The project’s name (pronounced “bohn eevair”) comes from a purposeful misspelling of the French phrase meaning “good winter” and, for Vernon, it certainly was. After Internet acclaim, the album saw a proper release in 2008 on the independent label Jagjaguwar to wide critical praise. An intensely personal listening experience, it showcases Vernon’s vulnerable falsetto over acoustic guitars and beds of reverb-soaked harmonies. Each of the deceptively simple folk songs is like a private snapshot of his failed relationship and subsequent isolation.

After playing both the Glastonbury and Bonnarro festivals, Vernon, known for his exhilarating live performances, heads to Austin for the Live Music Capital of the World’s seal of approval. Much to the delight of badge-holders and non-badge-holders alike, he’ll be promoting the new EP, {Blood Bank}, first at ACL Fest, with a followup gig at the Paramount. Paramount Theatre, 713 Congress Ave., 472-5050, austintheatre.org

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