Karl Blau's latest album, Zebra, is said to be indebted to the textures of traditional African music, but trying to pinpoint the precise origins of the sounds within can be a disorienting experience. Blau has a thick, marshy voice that tends to plod along slowly through his sage-like and surreal stories. His songs often feel like slackly constructed folk collages that are pieced together in a foggy embankment of analog drones and shaken up with weird protrusions of spindly guitars and jazzy woodwinds. But despite the lethargy of his delivery, Blau has remained an exceedingly prolific and fearlessly experimental fixture of the Anacortes, Washington, indie scene for well over a decade. In addition to spearheading a subscription service of DIY music and art known as the Kelp Lunacy Advanced Plagiarism Society, Blau has collaborated frequently with artists such as Bret Lunsford (Beat Happening) and Phil Elverum (Mount Eerie), and currently serves as an in-house producer for K Records' Dub Narcotic studio. One of the groups he has produced, LAKE, will be joining him on tour as his backing band.
Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.