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Devotchka at the Academy Dublin Green Room

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Devotchka at the Academy Dublin Green Room


DEVOTCHKA
The Academy Green Room
25th November 2018

Tickets €17.50 on sale Friday 28th September at 9am from Ticketmaster
Doors: 7pm / 18+

When Devotchka frontman Nick Urata began work on a new album, despite a strong work ethic that compels him to work each and every day, the writing process proved to be a slow yet cathartic burn. (Naturally, his film work was also keeping his hands full —since the Grammy- nominated score to Little Miss Sunshine, Urata has composed the scores for myriad films including Crazy Stupid Love, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, and Paddington. Most recently, he composed the original theme song and score for the Netflix Original A Series of Unfortunate Events.)

Through persistence, concerted effort, and patience, Urata found his path. A musical perfectionist, the longer-than-typical window provided more opportunities to tinker, a blessing that can often be accelerated or outright ignored in these modern times. As Urata says, if you are going to hand him the luxury of time, he is going to put it to good use—and
time is often what he requires.

“I get a creative spark and then have to chase it down, sometimes, for years,” he says. “One thing I’ve learned from great writers is to force yourself to show up to work everyday, even if you feel you don’t have anything—apply yourself and it will come. It really does work. Writing music has always been the one thing in my life that’s subconsciously gnawed at me. I have to do it.”

Urata pulled from old notebooks and half-formed ideas as much as he conjured fresh material from the present. But in writing lyrics he has found that nearly every idea came from the past— despite the tense in which he sings. “I have a file in the back of my head with things that have happened to me, and that’s where I get my songs. I’m probably not alone in that. A lot of people think the song is happening now—‘you must be going through a horrible breakup right now.’ Really, I’m just getting in touch with the past. When you add music, it can take you right back there. Music is the great coaxer of those feelings, and that’s why people connect to songs. Music opens you up.”

In writing for what he would eventually title This Night Falls Forever, Urata tapped directly into his past, connecting the dots between that audience-and-artist relationship and a period of intense self-discovery. “One common thread in these songs is their sentimentality,” Urata says. “When you first discover rock and roll, that’s usually the same time you’re discovering girls or boys, when everything is so romantic and huge—that era of your life is where these songs are coming from. The songs are usually the same, thematically: why don’t you love me, why did you leave me, I don’t love you anymore, I miss you, I want to die...theres’s only a couple themes when you break it down. I’ve always
dealt in romance. I don’t know what else to write about.”

Urata cites the scope of the album as even more ambitious than Devotchka’s past work, with more detailed arrangements, more people involved including full orchestras, and an overall bigger sound. He praises the work of his bandmates, whose ability to build upon his demos lends the finished songs a sense of flesh and bone. “They enhanced it, rounded it out, and made it cool,” Urata says. “They added that live feeling that takes the songs to the next level. A big part of making a record is capturing the humanity”

As for the album’s title, Urata was inspired by yet another period of transition, albeit one that occurs each and every day: the passing of day into night. It’s a fitting motif for his process, a constant reminder that toil eventually makes way for transport.

“I wanted to capture that moment of twilight falling, where there’s electricity in the air and you get that sense that everything is going to be OK,” Urata says. “The harsh sunlight is gone, you start to get messages from your spiritual side, and it’s not all about the day’s work and politics and struggles. Theres’s a sense of something bigger at twilight; that’s where it came together for me. When I was going through a really tough time, a bad breakup years ago, the days were terrifying and lonely and I was broke—but once the night fell, there was music. If I could just get to sunset, things will look good. I guess that feeling’s stuck. You want the night to last forever. It’s the aesthetic of the album, the thing I picture
when I close my eyes.”

Tickets €17.50 on sale Friday 28th September at 9am from Ticketmaster



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