Multi-instrumentalist Richard Reed Parry is thrilled to release his entrancing new album Quiet River of Dust Vol. 2: That Side of the River today, the companion piece to Vol. 1 that was released last year.
Watch Parry discuss the album’s meanings and origins in the Vol. 2 album trailer HERE.
The first volume of Quiet River of Dust was released on the autumn equinox of 2018 and this second volume was created at the same time. It was originally set to come out on the spring equinox but nature had other ideas, as it look longer than expected to wait for salt crystals to grow on the artwork to create wave caps and mountaintops—do not underestimate Parry’s attention to detail.
The genesis of these songs came after Arcade Fire’s first tour of Japan in February 2008. Parry stayed on for weeks after the last show, heading to a monastery for some solace in “the biggest silence you’ve ever heard.” One day he was walking alone in a massive, snow-covered cedar forest when he heard distant voices, voices that sounded a lot like his father’s folk group back in Toronto, Friends of Fiddlers Green. (Parry was 17 when his father died in 1995.)
“There was no reason for something to sound like full-throated, British-Isle folk singing there,” he recalls. “I walked and walked but I could never get closer to where the music was coming from.” He started writing meditative songs about mortality. On a later trip to Japan, he discovered the “River of Death,” a body of water understood in pre-Buddhist Japanese culture to be a liminal space between life and an afterlife.
Both volumes bleed into one another, by design. “It feels like a multi-sided window to me,” says Parry, “a different view into this prismatic song world.” Japanese folk myths, death poems and British folk music are tributaries flowing into a river of late-20th century avant-garde composition and traditional song craft, written and performed by a member of a Grammy-winning rock band. This is a meditative, widescreen musical experience with Beach Boy harmonies and a hypnotic pulse. Layered songs that move in a linear fashion, following a current rather than circular composition.
Parry is returning to Montreal for a residency at the Society for Arts and Technology (SAT) dome as part of the Montreal International Jazz Festival from June 25 – 29 and July 2 – 6 and will also perform at Planetarium Hamburg in Hamburg, Germany from August 16 – 18. The immersive performances will combine music from Quiet River of Dust: Vol. 1 & 2 with hypnotic, transforming, nature visuals shot in 360º by Richard on his world travels. Expect an unparalleled live experience that delves into the murky waters of memory and the unconscious mind. Each Friday night of the residency will include an additional show, ‘Late nights in the dome: Ambient improvisations in a stunning 360º visual world,’ featuring a musical ensemble made of Parry’s band and many Montreal musical luminaries. All upcoming Richard Reed Parry tour dates are listed below.
2019 TOUR DATES
6/25 – 6/29 – Montreal, QC – Quiet River of Dust Immersive Dome Residency @ Society for Arts and Technology [SAT] Montreal
7/2 – 7/6 – Montreal, QC – Quiet River of Dust Immersive Dome Residency @ Society for Arts and Technology [SAT] Montreal
7/12 – Guelph, Canada – Guelph Lake Conservation Area
8/16 – 8/18 – Hamburg, Germany – Quiet River of Dust Immersive Dome Show @ Hamburg Planetarium
11/26 – Tokyo, Japan – WWWX
11/27 – Osaka, Japan – Shangri-La
2020 TOUR DATES
5/29 – Hamburg, Germany – Elbphilharmonie – Kleiner Saal