Disemballerina – Poison Gown

“…The Portland trio creates something so special, and so arresting, and so confounding, with a level of emotional heft that that I’ve encountered only a spare few times in over a decade of music writing, that it’s nearly impossible to describe. The best way to experience Disemballerina is to listen, and now you can do just that, as the band has posted its latest release on Bandcamp: Poison Gown (which will be released shortly on cassette by Red River Family, with artwork by Pippi Zornoza, and on CD by Minotauro Records).

​Myles Donovan, who plays viola, harp, and, er, machete is joined by cellist Jennifer Christensen and Ayla Holland on acoustic guitar and bajo quinto.​.. ​Poison Gown is painted in the same muted tones of funerary gloom and chamber doom that colored​​Undertaker​ so beautifully, though its major theme is of revenge rather than loss. It’s a dusky, haunted collection of gently insistent melodies that float in and out of consciousness like an old woman on her deathbed. That thanatological mood comes as no mere coincidence; Donovan has spent many of his nights as a hospice worker playing his harp for the dying, singing the dead to sleep with strings and silence.  Donovan is also partly responsible for the thematic aspects of the band’s instrumental neoclassical dirges, though all three members contribute. The band trafficks in vengeance and death, historical and otherwise; the title itself is a reference to an urban legend with supposed real-life roots, wherein an aggrieved party would dip a dress in poison and send it to an enemy as a deadly gift, leaving them unwittingly dressed to kill. It’s elegant, morbid, and unexpected—Disemballerina in a nutshell.”

-Kim Kelly, Vice Magazine  http://noisey.vice.com/blog/disemballerina-poison-gown




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