The Go Outside album…
is pretty straight forward. It speaks to the nature of being in this chaotic political and emotional climate, the way it wears on humanity, and on the other side where we can all find tranquility by just spending time with nature. This sort of straightforwardness is a hallmark of Liana Gabel's artistry. It's apparent in her lyrics, which are frank and direct, and often subtly funny, too. It's there in her sound: a striking amalgam of spectral vocal jazz, straight-to-the-gut Appalachian folk, urgent neo-soul, minimalist alternative pop, and experimental music. It's also present in her dancing, which, unusually for an alternative pop singer, is absolutely indispensable to the music she makes. As anybody who has seen one of her intimate – but exciting – concerts can tell you, Gabel doesn't need a drummer to drive her songs. Her tap dancing keeps the beat as well as any percussionist could.
"On the ‘Fool' track,
the percussion is two layered tracks of tap", explains Gabel, who has been studying movement since she was a child, and whose personal style explores the intersection between jazz and modern dance. "Two of the other tracks on Go Outside have tap dancing as their rhythm tracks, too. On the 'Fool’ track (soon to be released as a video) is an example of the sort of improvised dancing that I do a lot of. I feel where my body needs to be, where the beat needs to be to express what I’m feeling in the moment.” There’s plenty of imaginative, intuitive tap dancing percussion on the album that radiates vulnerability, ambivalence, defiance, and preternatural poise in the midst of turmoil.
Go Outside was composed…
during a month long residency at The Sanctuary in Arcata, CA in the fall of 2016 and recorded during another month long residency in the spring of 2017. Liana was picked up by Rhyme and Reason records this spring. Liana Gabel co-produced the album with Daniel Nickerson, who also mixed the set and played many of the instruments. Musicians Hannah Rosencrans and Matt Takiff also made instrumental contributions. Katie Belknap added whistling to the title track “Go Outside.” Gabel has been playing solo for the past 10 years, she has played with the indie rock band Blue Museum, she leads the jazz quartet Liana Gabel Four, she’s a member of the Artists Alliance Against Violence, and she hosts a weekly open mic – “Tappin Tuesday” – in her home when she is at home and not on the road town of Rosendale NY, Go Outside will be released on Rhyme And Reason Records on Friday September 27th