Monday, January 16, 2012

Pitstop: Peter Broderick

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My discovery of Portand musician Peter Broderick might very well be one of the most roundabout ways I've discovered an artist. Yesterday when I saw Sharon Van Etten's i-D session, I was curious about the other girl featured in her video doing harmonies. A cursory search of the internet revealed her as Heather Woods Broderick, a talented singer/songwriter in her own right and reading a bit about her led to the revelation that she had been member of Horse Feathers and a touring member of Efterklang alongside her brother Peter.

What essentially intrigued me about Peter Broderick is that instead of having a standard bio on his website he has an email address where you can send him questions, in return for asking him question he answers them via improvised song. That was actually my first introduction to his music. In addition to his inventive bio, the man has a discography that's a bit intimidating. As said before he was one of the initial members of Portland folk pop group Horse Feathers as well as a touring member of Denmark's Efterklang, that and he's apparently a talented multi-instrumentalist, composer, and arranger. His back catalog is full of score work as well as appearances on albums by M. Ward, She & Him, Laura Gibson, Blitzen Trapper, and Yann Tiersen to name just an impressive few. But Broderick's also got a solo career to envy. Broderick has instrumental albums galore and has about two proper full lengths with possibly another one of the way.

Peter Broderick's music is the kind that you can totally lose yourself in. It's hypnotically quiet and strangely simple without being reductive. This is the constant between 2008's Home, 2010's How They Are and Broderick's solely instrumental works. Broderick, even during his vocal-focused endeavors, gives the instrumentals their proper due; with one minute long intros before the first lyrics are even uttered not out of the norm ("Human Eyeballs on Toast" and "Guilt's Tune" being the most notable examples).

Peter Broderick is currently based in Berlin working on more music so hopefully there's more to come from him soon. Until then, get a taste of Broderick with "Not at Home" off Home,  "Part 2: Understanding" from Music for Congregation, a movement from a ballet Broderick scored, and "Pulling the Rain" a solo piano track off How They Are.  

 Not At Home by _type

 Peter Broderick – Part 2: Understanding by erasedtapes

 Peter Broderick - Pulling the Rain by DmitryDetective

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