Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Letters To Distant Cities: A New Multimedia Project Featuring Shara Worden

While the last My Brightest Diamond album A Thousand Shark's Teeth came back in 2008, Shara Worden has steadily kept delivering new music through various projects. Her highest profile work would probably be the involvement in the Decembertist folk-rock opera The Hazards of Love, where she gave voice to the fairy queen. Yet last year saw her a featured player on ClogsThe Creatures in the Garden of Lady Walton, and then collaborating with Sarah Kirkland Snyder on the brilliant Penelope song sequence. Now she is once again involved in another very artistic venture.

Letters To Distant Cities comes from New York-based indie classical label New Amsterdam Records, who also previously released the Penelope album. The project finds Worden exploring the work of Turkish-American poet Mustafa Ziyalan along side a cast that includes Clare Muldaur Manchon and composer Rob Moose. For most of the album Worden is in poetry mode as she translates Ziyalan's verse to english, but she also delivers a new My Brightest Diamond song. The video for that contribution can be found below. Letters To Distant Cities is available now on digital download and physical cd. The latter of which includes 24 photographic illustrations based on the poetry that completes the multimedia project.

I find myself becoming a bigger fan of Shara Worden with each venture. For one, her voice is unbelievably powerful. There is no wonder she keeps getting recruited for these concept albums where her vocals need to convey a particular character or comprise deep emotion. Also, it's good to see a predominate indie musician whose artistic scope goes beyond that of the typical blogger-hype band. According to Colin Meloy, she was even considered for a role in the Spider-Man musical. Worden is not your typical indie artist, and I love her for it. 

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