A Sea of Tiny Lights
Nathan Lawr's musical career has been all about movement: the fluid motions of drumming for Royal City, FemBots, and other musical colleagues; the cross-country touring with folks like Jim Guthrie, The Constantines, and the "Mid-winter/Mid-autumn Night's Dream" revues; the step out from behind the kit to begin writing and performing his own songs. No surprise, then, that relocating to Sudbury for love and learning has given Lawr new impetus on his musical journeys, now gathered on his third album, A Sea of Tiny Lights.
Buoyed by greater contributions from his musical friends The Minotaurs - Paul Aucoin, Evan Clarke, Kristian Galberg, Shaw-Han Liem, Dave MacKinnon, Kate Maki, and Simon Osborne - and with the assistance of producer Andy Magoffin (The Constantines, Royal City, Two-Minute Miracles), A Sea of Tiny Lights sees Lawr creating bigger pieces and tackling larger themes. The band's sound has expanded, both sonically and in the genres covered. The aural landscape now takes in everything from Ethiopian funk and chunky Motown soul ballads to art-folk stomps and creepy horn-drum-bass jazz. It is at once shy and swaggering, mixing the quiet nervousness of Lawr's debut The Heart Beats A Waltz with the loose experimentation of The Minotaur Orchestra project and the sophomore album Secret Carpentry.
Lyrically, the songs of A Sea of Tiny Lights are inspired by anything and everything, like the story of Jim Loney, the Christian kidnapped by insurgents in Iraq ("Footsteps"), Gus Van Sant's Columbine interpretation Elephant ("There's A Devil"), and Uruguayan author Eduardo Galleano's Book of Embraces ("Swimming Like a Needle in the Haystack of the Sea"). Demonstrating his ever-growing songwriting strength, Lawr strikes a fascinating and subtle balance between the objective and the subjective, the abstract and the concrete, the personal and the political.
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