Editors’ Notes Damien Jurado pared down his songwriting to its barest of essentials on 2019’s In the Shape of a Storm, an all-acoustic set that paid homage to his late friend and frequent collaborator Richard Swift. The Seattle singer-songwriter’s 15th album follows a similarly understated route, touching on themes of guilt, commitment, and acceptance over a broader palette of sounds. Jurado narrates story sketches that feel like part of a larger story on "Arthur Aware” and “When You Were Few," decorating his acoustic arrangements with lush ambient textures over his soft, gravely voice. “Sandra” is just as spare and mysterious, setting up an intimate moment that leaves more questions than answers: “Don’t get up just yet/For I am still changing my mind.” The serene cosmic waltz of “The End of the Road” is gorgeously orchestrated and adventurous, which, just like his five-album stint with Swift (best demonstrated on his sprawling Maraqopa trilogy), shows his willingness to take chances.

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