Strand of Oaks will release Dark Shores this week. It’s full of encroaching uncertainty, of diving into the unknown, of risk in the face of vast, unforgiving nature and follows 2010's masterpiece, Pope Killdragon.
In Strand Of Oaks songs, lovers get divorced, murder John Belushi’s drug dealer, go bowling with mythical giants, and watch their youth slip away and commune with John F. Kennedy’s illegitimate son. Obviously, Showalter has allowed himself many liberties with what constitutes the truth, and his commingling of fact and fiction, of humor and heartbreak simultaneously distinguishes him from the bearded, acoustic-toting singer-songwriters he’s so easily compared to: immerse yourself in a Strand Of Oaks record and confessionals turn into metaphor, autobiography transferred into tall tales. The self-released, self-promoted Killdragon earned an 8.1 score at Pitchfork and is available here for free download.