When: Tue., May 29, 9 p.m. 2012
Maria Linden and Fredrik Balck, aka Stockholm-based duo I Break Horses, are scholars of shoegaze structure: the deep layerings of sound on their beautiful debut full-length, 2011's Hearts (Bella Union), show an architect's attention to detail and a construction worker's doggedness. Those qualities don't detract one bit from the sensuality and drama of the music, though—Linden's vocals break through the fugue state created by the group's swirling electronic fog and make the promise of intimacy sound like a threat. Linden is the composer and Balck the lyricist, and the fact that they're constantly interpreting and responding to each other's work might build a sort of emotional distance into the songs—or it might mean their ideas are literally inseparable. It's hard to tell, because in some senses, shoegaze is all about the inability or refusal to be open and direct—and about the fascinating mind-worlds humans build to hide from real connection. —Monica Kendrick California Wives open.