Recorded at beloved Portland (& West Coast) Venues throughout 2019, before all touring and show-going stopped. Many of these recordings are early versions or "in process" versions of songs that would be recorded for "Dream Weather Its Electric Song" in "final" versions. As with so many Half Shadow performances there is a nearly discomforting intimacy that comes with these recordings, and a quiet wildness that finds its way through the guitar and vocals. Random musicians often join me on stage in these songs, equipment glitches, or I change the song in the middle to keep it interesting for myself, and hopefully, the audience, too. Sometimes these tactics work, other times it's a disaster. Still, I want to stay on my toes and be challenged to different moments of creativity. My intention is always to make something with immediacy that also sparks of some kind of "truth" and gets at the "psychic," the shared space between the minds and hearts of all humans (and all living beings). I hope some of this comes through in these eager little diamonds.
All songs collected on iphone and played back through tape and fancy preamps. Therefore they don't sound unlistenably raw. Mastered in the Void.
Thanks to the small but dedicated clique of Half Shadow lovers who consistently come to these seemingly infinitesimal, often off-kilter, but exceedingly lovely show experiences that I partake in. Your care and appreciation is everything! I'd also briefly like to thank the friends whose voices appear, unbeknownst to them, on these live recordings.
Recording locations & dates:
1. Walking Underneath, Cleo's Birthday Party, Portland, 5.25.19. featuring EVERYONE WHO WAS THERE on percussion.
2. Having a Party, Speck's Records, Portland, Date Unknown (???), completely improvised.
3. Moss Tongue, Beauty Supply, Oakland, 10.10.19. I played after pretty much most of the crowd had left already, but was rewarded with the warmest most fun group of listeners who were all ready to talk favorite astrology apps, the perils of double water sign placements, and kissing.
4. Telepathy (Is Real), Speck's Records, Portland, 5.2.19. But Discussion from 6.20.19 at Al's Den, Portland, Karl Blau is the Telepathic Questioner.
6. House of Unknowing, No Fun Bar, Portland, 4.8.19. Drunk but very sweet absolute stranger man on Djembe, Yaara Valey's voice can be heard in response to each unseen (here on tape) dance move I was doing.
7. Half Shadow, Beauty Supply, Oakland, 10.10.19. This is the only recording of this song, as its never come out on a Half Shadow album and it probably never will. It's about how you hide the best parts of yourself from yourself and others, and then the worst parts just come out without you wanting them to. I wish we could get a handle on this.
8. Body of Mist, No Fun Bar, Portland, 10.24.19. People were incredibly still and stoic when I recited the poem at the end, which felt special in a quietly electric way.
9. Gravity, No Fun Bar, Portland, 10.24.19. This is pretty much always how the live version sounded, with a backwards loop; I personally prefer the grandeur of the album version, but I couldn't properly do the dance moves while playing guitar, yunno?
10. The Electric Song, Speck's Records, Portland, 5.2.19. This is the FIRST TIME this song was ever played live, I really enjoy the way it sounds here - ecstatic & raw.
“Half Shadow, the ever-evolving songwriting extension of Jesse Carsten, is built of a series of weighted dream-
songs...filled with detours to unexpected lands where the line between open and unhinged is thin. Carsten's performances are invariably powerful, full of wonder, and unlike anything else."