When: Mon., Jan. 2, 9 p.m. 2017
The strata of Slow Planes’ minimalist folk compositions build upon one another like bends of a cozy scarf. Each guitar strum, banjo pick, violin shiver, snare tap, and upright-bass pluck work to wrap the listener in a warm timbre, the intensity determined by the presence or absence of each layer and the personality of its conductor. The band’s new six-song vinyl and cassette debut, Yearlong, is only the the second album released by Compound Records—the hobby label begun by Rob Sevier of Numero Group—and the partnership seems a great fit given the collective nature of the band’s process. The reverb-assisted intoning of singer-guitarist-leader Timothy Breen anchors the musical chorus of his friends and collaborators, who favor a less-is-more approach in their parts but still stand out as individuals (violinist Esther Shaw of Wrekmeister Harmonies and upright bassist Anton Hatwich are both featured on the recording). The songs are mediations in a larger narrative rather than a series of A-B-structured singles, and Minbal recording engineer Brian Sulpizio allows the whole thing to breathe naturally—with a sort of breeze passing through each fold—resulting in a soothing and meditative soundtrack for winter hibernating. Joining Breen for this show are Nick Barnett (guitar, percussion), Conor Harvey (banjo, guitar), Ron Kurek (electronics), and David Strand (percussion).