Grouper “Vital”

21 Dec 2012 — Henning Lahmann


Last night, this track exploded all over both my RSS reader and my social media feeds. Disregarding possible faux pre-apocalypse wariness, it's probably not the worst sign for the general state of underground music if something as fragile and delicate as Liz Harris' work is still deemed buzzworthy to such a heavy extent. I don't know. In any case personally it's rather fitting that this track would surface now, as the incomprehensible glimpse that was 2012 comes to a close, as for me Grouper had already effectively started the year in terms of music with her literally enchanting seven-hour performance at Kreuzberg's HAU during CTM festival in early February. Grouper's work is withdrawn music for cold and dark days, and of course "Vital" is no exception, despite possible connotations of its name that might suggest otherwise. In fact, it's quite likely that it's only the ubiquitous pre-christmas madness that keeps us from realising that right at this very moment in time, we are anything but. The song will be part of Harris' forthcoming and sublimely beautiful full-length The Man Who Died in His Boat.

The Man Who Died in His Boat, out February 4 via Kranky, is a collection of songs Harris had recorded alongside her classic Dragging a Dead Deer Up a Hill, which will see a re-release on the same day.