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LISTEN: Grouper - Vital
Laurie Tuffrey , December 21st, 2012 11:58

First listen to track from forthcoming new album The Man Who Died In His Boat

Grouper, aka Portland-based sound artist Liz Harris, has just dropped a preview of her new album, The Man Who Died In His Boat (artwork above), which is out February 4 via Kranky - have a listen to 'Vital' below:

It continues in the vein of her previous work, carefully drawing minimal acoustic guitar and vocals out of swelling field noise, producing something that sounds altogether sweeping.

Harris adds in text that accompanies the new song, explaining the title of the album: "When I was a teenager the wreckage of a sailboat washed up on the shore of Agate Beach. The remains of the vessel weren't removed for several days. I walked down with my father to peer inside the boat cabin. Maps, coffee cups and clothing were strewn around inside.

"I remember looking only briefly, wilted by the feeling that I was violating some remnant of this man's presence by witnessing the evidence of its failure. Later I read a story about him in the paper. It was impossible to know what had happened. The boat had never crashed or capsized. He had simply slipped off somehow, and the boat, like a riderless horse, eventually came back home."

The fact that the new cut feels wintry, though in a sense that's hard to place, perhaps comes out of Harris's modus operandi. As she told us earlier this year: "I do translate everything I see and experience towards visualization of another space. Sort of like a camera obscura, somehow each additional bit of information from this plane [the 'real' world] goes towards painting in more details on another. Sort of poltergeisting, black hole projections."

Read our full interview here.