Bon Iver To Play Santa Barbara Bowl, Tickets On Sale February 11th
First it was For Emma, Forever Ago. The soul in a refraction of icicles. A moment hanging like breath on air. And yet life — even
still life — is not still. The story is not a story if it does not unravel. Your eyes you may cast backward, but the heart is locked in
the chest and must beat forever forward. Self-titled, Bon Iver is the frozen beast pressing upward from a loosening earth, one ear
cocked to the echo of the ghost choir still singing, the other craving the martial call of drums tumbling, of thrum and wheeze. The
desolation smoke has dissipated, cut with strips of brass. Celebration will not be denied, the cabinet cannot contain the rattle, there
is meat on the bones.
“Bon Iver is often equated with just me,” says Vernon, “but you are who surrounds you, and for Bon Iver I wanted to invite those
voices as musical catalysts.” Thus on the track “Beth/Rest” and throughout the album, we hear the pedal steel of Greg Leisz
(Lucinda Williams, Bill Frisell), the uniquely layered low end of Colin Stetson’s (Tom Waits, Arcade Fire) saxophones, the riffing
of Mike Lewis’ (Happy Apple, Andrew Bird) altos and tenors, and the lush horns of C.J. Camerieri (Rufus Wainwright, Sufjan
Stevens). Bon Iver regulars Sean Carey, Mike Noyce and Matt McCaughan contributed vocals, drums and production, Rob Moose
(Antony and the Johnsons, The National) helped with arranging and added strings, and fellow members of Volcano Choir, Jim
Schoenecker and Tom Wincek provided processing.
Bon Iver was recorded and mixed at April Base Studios, a remodeled veterinarian’s clinic located in rural Fall Creek, Wisconsin.
“It’s an unique space and destination; it’s our home out here,” says Vernon, who purchased the structure with his brother in late
2008 with the sole intention of converting it into his ideal recording studio. “It’s been a wonderful freedom, working in a place we
built. It’s also only three miles from the house I grew up in, and just ten minutes from the bar where my parents met.” The creation
of Bon Iver was a three-year process, and Vernon says the completion of the studio paralleled the completion of the album. “I was
writing and recording in the windows of time snatched between tours in support of For Emma,” he says. “When I finally came
home to hunker down for a solid stretch there was a feeling of solid ground and an opportunity for liberation waiting in the space
In the absence of solid ground, the whirlwind becomes a whirlpool, and Bon Iver is Justin Vernon returning to former haunts with
a new spirit. The reprises are there — solitude, quietude, hope and desperation compressed — but always a rhythm arises, a pulse
vivified by gratitude and grace notes, some as bright as a bicycle bell. The winter, the legend, has faded to just that, and this is the
new momentary present. The icicles have dropped, rising up again as grass.
Don’t miss your chance to see Bon Iver at the Santa Barbara Bowl on Sunday, April 22nd, with special guest All
Tickets range from $30 to $47, plus applicable service charges. The Santa Barbara Bowl is located at
1122 N. Milpas St., Santa Barbara, CA 93103, 805-962-7411.
Tickets On Sale SATURDAY, February 11th at 11am!