Most Americans don't realize that in Australia, we actually celebrate x-mas in June! The winter solstice (or hibernal solstice), also known as midwinter, marks the shortest day and longest night of the year. In the Southern Hemisphere this is the June solstice, falling this year on Wednesday, June 21. In recognition of this monumental astronomical phenomenon, we present for your listening pleasure, the latest installment in the continuing evolution of Dumb Numbers, the Stranger EP.
About the music:
Back in September of 2015, we were invited by our friends The Lemonheads to join them on a short West Coast tour. About a week before we were scheduled to leave, our drummer Murph had to drop out of the tour for personal reasons. Bonnie and Steve had already purchased their flights from Melbourne to Los Angeles so we were committed to the tour, but the thought of trying to find another drummer to emulate Murph's drum parts just felt wrong. So we decided to throw away our planned set list of "Murph songs" and instead enlisted Aniela Perry to join us on electric cello for some very slow, cinematic and open-ended interpretations of our songs.
We all really enjoyed playing these particular shows, the songs opening themselves up with space to stretch out and breathe and be as long as they wanted to be. It was a very freeing experience with so much room for improvisation from night to night. After the tour we decided to document these new interpretations and booked a day in the studio with Toshi Kasai in Los Angeles and performed our set live in the studio. Along with some epic drumming and percussion by the legendary Dale Crover, we are also very happy to welcome the beautiful Thor Harris from Swans into the family, who added tubular bells, gongs and additional percussion to our new version of "Without".
"I Am Nothing" is not an Electric Wizard cover, but rather takes its name from the spoken word performance by another talented Melbourne family friend, Elissa Rose, who added her poetry to the improvised instrumental section we started our set with each night. And last but not least, another Aussie member of the Dumb Numbers family, Geordie Stafford from Golden Bats, adds some crushing elemental guitar to the outro section of "Sometimes".
About the artwork:
The Stranger EP title comes from the painting by Peggy Reavey that adorns the inside and outside of the record sleeve. I met Peggy about 10 years ago through her daughter, Jennifer Lynch, and first saw the Stranger painting at one of Peggy's art exhibitions in San Pedro. Something about the painting spoke to me on a very primal level, with its surreal depiction of familial abuse. I can only speak as to how the artwork affects me personally, but please visit Peggy's website for a statement by the artist and to see more of her incredible artwork. Some of Peggy's paintings can also been seen hanging on Fred & Renee Madison's living room wall in David Lynch's Lost Highway.
We sincerely hope you enjoy the music. We recommend listening at night with some mood lighting, incorporating this listening experience into your nightime ritual.
Dumb Numbers // Stranger EP // Buy the Album