The 12th full-length by Pacific Northwest artist Liz Harris aka Grouper is a collection of songs spanning fifteen years. She characterizes Shade as an album about respite, and the coast, poetically and literally. How one frames themselves in a landscape, how in turn it frames themselves; memories and experiences carried forward mapping a connection to place—“an ode to blue / what lives in shade.”
Songs touch on loss, flaws, hiding places, love. Deep connections to the Bay Area, and the North Coast, with its unique moods of solitude, beauty, and isolation—a place described and transformed by the chaos and power of river-mouth, wild maritime storms, columns of mist that rise up unexpectedly on the road at night. Portions were recorded on Mount Tamalpais during a self-made residency years back, other pieces made longer ago in Portland, while the rest were tracked during more recent sessions in Astoria.
Throughout, Harris threads a hidden radiant language of voice, disquiet, and guitar, framed by open space and the sense of being far away—“Echoing a lighthouse, burying the faults of being human / Into things that we project upon the sky at night.”