Release Date: Mar 22, 2019
Record label: Dead Oceans
Timothy Showalter's decade-plus career as Strand of Oaks teeters on an empirical belief that maybe there are no lines between art and life at all. His towering, synth-infused rock anthems and solemn guitar-and-voice meditations relay his experience in plain language: his adolescence in the small Indiana town of Goshen, his musical heroes, his fears and self-loathing, the messy emotional goulash of love and marriage. His rocker's distillation of Henry James' position--that "A novel is in its broadest definition a personal, a direct impression of life"--fuses a bold shoegaze and heartland-rock aesthetic with the lyrical posture of modern confessionalists like Mount Eerie and Margo Price.
"The scene isn't my scene anymore" croons Tim Showalter on Eraserland's inaugural track and lead single "Weird Ways. " It's a sentiment that anybody with a rearview mirror can relate to, and as inward-looking as his Strand of Oaks project has been over the last decade, Showalter has rarely sounded as self-referential as he does on the band's seventh full-length effort. After the release of 2017's high-octane Hard Love and the birth of his son, Strand of Oaks drifted apart -- Showalter parses through the aftermath in great detail on the bruising Crazy Horse-meets-the Clash dub-rocker "Moon Landing," which features a smoldering guest solo from Jason Isbell.