If you’ve been frequenting this site over the past couple of years, you’d likely be familiar with La Sera, the recording project of Vivian Girls‘ and All Saints Day‘s Katy Goodman. Initially begun as a solo side project, Goodman’s La Sera found an increasingly growing national profile with the release of her first three critically applauded albums — the project’s self-titled debut, her sophomore effort, Sees the Light and her third effort, Hour of the Dawn. Each subsequent album found Goodman experimenting and expanding upon her sound with Hour of the Down revealing an 80s guitar pop influence, clearly drawing from The Smiths, The Pretenders, and others.
Goodman released her fourth La Sera album, Music For Listening To Music To earlier this year and at its core, the material revealed an artist who has gone through a series of personal and artistic transitions that heavily influenced the material’s lyrical themes and concerns — while further cementing Goodman’s burgeoning reputation for crafting shimmering guitar pop paired with infectious hooks and Goodman’s plaintive, ethereal vocals. One of the biggest personal and creative transitions was that Goodman’s husband Todd Wisenbaker, who may best be known as a member of Music For Listening‘s producer, Ryan Adams‘ backing band and Hour of the Dawn‘s producer, officially joined as a cowriter, guitarist and collaborator. And for a song like “I Need an Angel,” the material manages to nod both at The Smiths’ “This Charming Man,” and Johnny Cash‘s and June Carter Cash‘s “Jackson” thanks in part to the alternating boy-girl verses, and their harmonizing on the song’s hook and chorus.
Goodman and Wisenbaker will be releasing Music For Listening to Music To‘s follow-up and continuation of sorts, Queens EP today and you might remember that earlier this month I wrote about the upbeat, propulsive and shimmering EP title track, which was written while Wisenbaker was on a leisurely stroll through East Hollywood at dusk one night. And as Goodman adds, “To me, the song stands for being an important, passionate, loving person in your own life, every day.” The EP’s second and latest single changes things up quite a bit — mainly because it’s a strutting and swaggering homage/cover of Led Zeppelin‘s “Whole Lotta Love.” And while being a somewhat straightforward cover sonically, Goodman’s vocals add a completely different interpretation and feel to a beloved and familiar song; in fact, her vocals add a feminine sultriness. Interestingly, the La Sera cuts the end section of the original, presumably to be gender neutral — and that decision also adds its own series of interpretations to a familiar and beloved song.
Goodman, Wisenbaker and the members of their backing band will be on tour throughout October to support both Music For Listening Music To and to the Queens EP and it’ll include two NYC area dates — October 22, 2016 at the Mercury Lounge and an early October 23, 2016 at Baby’s All Right. Check out the rest of the tour dates below.
10/07 Pomona, CA @ Glasshouse
10/08 San Diego, CA @ The Hideout
10/09 Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
10/10 Santa Fe, NM @ Meow Wolf
10/12 Austin, TX @ Sidewinder
10/13 Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
10/14 Kansas City, MO @ Riot Room
10/15 St Louis, MO @ Firebird
10/16 Nashville, TN @ High Watt
10/18 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade
10/19 Chapel Hill, NC @ Pinhook
10/20 Washington, DC @ Song Byrd
10/22 New York, NY @ Mercury Lounge
10/23 Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right (early)
10/25 Boston, MA @ Brookline Teen Center
10/26 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk
10/28 Toronto, ON @ Silver Dollar
10/29 Detroit, MI @ El Club
10/30 Chicago, IL @ Empty Bottle
11/01 Denver, CO @ Lost Lake
11/02 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
11/03 Reno, NV @ Holland Project
11/04 San Francisco, CA @ Swedish American Hall
11/05 Los Angeles, CA @ Bootleg Theater