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After many years spent as a steadfast and inventive collaborator—not only playing bass and producing four albums with Hiss Golden Messenger, but in large part forging that band’s sonic signature—multiinstrumentalist, recordist, and audio engineer Scott Hirsch has finally made a solo album, and it’s called Blue Rider Songs.
To describe Blue Rider Songs as cinematic is almost too easy, considering Hirsch’s acclaimed work as a film sound designer, but there are moments here (like “Raga of the Sea”) that remind me of what Ry Cooder’s Paris, Texas soundtrack might have sounded like if it was recorded in 2016; there is a similar sense of Western scale and desert longing. But what is most interesting about the album is not any one setting or voice, but rather the illimitable, inbetween spaces it traverses, the blue highways it rides between various traditions and tangents of North American vernacular music and the various nodes of Hirsch’s long and accomplished musical practice.
Scott is playing his record release show at The Lost Church in San Francisco on August 5th.
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