Glasser is the one-woman orchestra of Cameron Mesirow. Her debut album, Ring, is a singular work. It moves like the wake of a small boat in a still lake: each song its own, but leading to, and becoming, the next. In doing so it builds on the tradition of classic albums like Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks, Joni Mitchell’s Blue, and R. Kelly’s Trapped In the Closet song-cycle: albums that as a whole create stories that are bigger than the sum of their individual songs.
Glasser entered public consciousness in 2009 with her debut EP, Apply, on True Panther, and a UK-only 12” on the Young Turks label. The intimate, luxurious music resonated widely, despite being made by Cameron, alone and in airplanes and shoe stores, on Garage Band. Her EPs and live shows earned her attention from producers Van Rivers and the Subliminal Kid (who co-produced a few tracks and the transitions on this album) and opening tour slots with the XX, Jonsi, and Delorean.
With Ring, however, Cameron worked for months with producer Ariel Rechtshaid to re-imagine her musical arrangements, incorporating organic instrumentation like strings, woodwinds, bass, and a wide array of percussion into her once-sparse recordings. Her simple, minimal melodies and rapturous vocals are perfectly complimented by the album’s maximalist arrangements. The voice becomes a focal instrument, delivers abstract stories and sounds that drench the music in emotion without resorting to narrative clichés.
It’s high noon in Brooklyn but its always midnight on southern, dead end suburban streets. Here, there is total silence except for the house at the very end, where inside a tin roof garage, teenagers are kissing for the first time. The humidity is too great, the boys peel off white t’s and the girls cheeks are flushed, beet red under the garage’s two fluorescent stripes. In a pond behind the house an alligator waits for a snow birds’ Pomeranian to take its night stroll. A child is sleep walking for the first time. Some one is running away for the last time. The music is too loud on the 12 D battery boom box radio, the cops are on their way. It’s at this moment you hear the music of Twin Shadow on a radio station transmitting suburban ghost dreams that sound like a slow motion shot of a cannon, singing about spirits, visions, and aural hallucinations cutting through the first American night.
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