From Neko Case to Spoon, Tom Waits to The Weakerthans – there’s a common thread amongst artists on Anti- Recordings that shines through on each and every release they put out; a firm belief that song craft should come before an artists image or a ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ mass marketing appeal. It’s one of the reasons why Anti- is the ideal home for newest signings Wilco, who join the label fresh from completing their tenure at Nonesuch Records and why – upon the first few opening bars of newcomer Sean Rowe’s debut album Magic – you know this isn’t going to be just another singer-songwriter going through the motions.
Rowe’s voice is one of pure wonderment – Springsteen-like in narrative, yet deeply resonant in tone a la Gil Scott-Heron – it’s a weapon of quiet destruction that’s used to devastating effect on the 10 songs that make up Magic. Recorded in the small upstate town of Troy NYC, in a studio above the space where Rowe’s grandfather once ran an Italian restaurant. The recording process, as he describes it, was intimate and incredibly specific. Brushes of fingertips on strings, hushed breaths, even the darkness of the studio seeping its way onto the record.
Released via Anti- on 21 February, stream the entire album in full below. Pre-order the album via the Anti- store here.