Amen Dunes' Love, released this past May on Sacred Bones, took close to a year and a half, 16 musicians, and 5 different studios to complete.
It was a song cycle that required broad experimentation before it was clear what was essential underneath the surface.
In that process, much of the sound that might have made it onto the album was lost. There was just too much to say for one record.
The Cowboy Worship EP is an attempt to give life to some of the music that didn't make it past the scalpel. From a blown-out version of "Green Eyes" featuring Harvey Milk's Stephen Tanner, to a darker and mellower "I Can't Dig It" as Amen Dunes' Damon McMahon originally arranged it upon writing the song in China, many of the original intentions for the music that were lost in the Love sessions are revived.
In addition is a band version of Through Donkey Jaw's "Lezzy Head," featuring Dunes mainstays Jordi Wheeler and Parker Kindred, and most significantly, a shining cover of This Mortal Coil's interpretation of the Tim Buckley classic, "Song to the Siren," featuring Ben Greenberg (Hubble) on guitar.
Tim Buckley, and several other singers, from Elvis Presley to Marvin Gaye to Tim Hardin, were the beacons that guided the making of Love. McMahon's cover of "Song to the Siren" is an homage to the spirit that directed those original sessions. In describing it, McMahon says, "I tried this one solo and it didn't feel right. Thankfully, Ben lived upstairs and was up for playing. He came down and we didn't have to say much to each other, which was a sign it would work. There isn't much talking in Amen Dunes; things either flow naturally or not at all. This track in particular, a This Mortal Coil cover of a Tim Buckley cover, is a perfect metaphor for Amen Dunes. Tim Buckley heart within a This Mortal Coil body, which could be substituted with a Bob Dylan heart within a Throbbing Gristle body, or any similar pairing, inverted, reversed or flipped, any which way. Solid Ying Yang."
Listen to it here:
The Cowboy Worship EP is out January 20th on Sacred Bones, and available for pre-order now.
MEN DUNES' TOUR DATES:
Thu. Jan. 22 - New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom w/ Kevin Morby, Nude Beach
Thu. March 26 - Baltimore, MD @ TBD
Fri. March 27 - Raleigh, NC @ Pinhook
Sat. March 28 - Knoxville, TN @ Big Ears Festival
Sun. March 29 - Bloomington, IN @ The Bishop
Tue. March 31 - Iowa City, IA @ Mission Creek Festival
Sat. April 1 - Chicago, IL @ Schubas
Sun. April 2 - Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Tavern