Photo by Lisa Carrot
Trevor Nikrant’s Tall Ladders is a hall of mirrors. These songs take place on the thresholds of perception and reality for its varied cast of characters -- characters often entwined in existential crises fueled by one capitalist ideology or another. Climb the ladder and encounter the worlds of the misanthropic priest (“Christmas With Your New God”), the housewife on the brink (“Dead Skin”), the drain on the ocean floor (“Put Me in the Movies”), and ‘the brain machine’ (“We Need You for Our Plan”). Throughout this dark, funny, and surprisingly tender journey, Nikrant also appears as his own character, opening Little Windows to new meaning making along the way.
A sonic and thematic sequel to 2018’s Living in the Kingdom, these songs are conjured through a homespun recipe of two-track tape and antiquated digital technology, where Nikrant paints the tales with a flood of instruments, from trombones to bowed mandolins. The arrangements are wide, sometimes having been layered over the course of years as instruments come in and out of the house. Improvisation also guides the recording process, from note choices to the very structure of each song. The ensuing sounds provide a visceral frame for the album's equally layered thematic voyage, which culminates in the spiritual revelation of the title track.
Trevor Nikrant is an artist living and working in Nashville, Tennessee. He creates and performs music individually as well as with psychedelic folk rock collective Styrofoam Winos. He also performs regularly as a member of the Kyle Hamlett Trio, the Anne Malin band, and various improvisational music happenings.
Releases on DLR: