Charlie Hall’s Invisible Ink brings collaborative music magic to Solar Myth – WXPN

Charlie Hall‘s debut album invisible ink, Released last year, the album welcomes listeners into an ethereal sonic experience, filled with rich and spacey instrumental tracks that span a variety of genres. Hall has said he never intended to make a solo album, but this project wasn’t a complete left turn for the tirelessly creative and unpredictable multi-instrumentalist.

Hall is perhaps best known as the drummer for the Philadelphia rock band War on Drugs. He has been providing the band with driving rhythms since the mid-2000s. Other fans also cherish his work as the mastermind behind both Philadelphia Special Christmas album, Eagles players sing holiday classics. He also played with Tommy Guerro and Jens Lekman, hosted live tribute performances honoring the works of Herbie Hancock and Miles Davis, and led a 16-piece choir called “Silver Ages.”

Hall seems to live and breathe music, especially smooth and soulful ’70s classics. you can really hear it invisible ink, a gorgeous, laid-back record that reflects his various passions and musical community. Many tracks sound like super-chilled indie rock, stripped of the voices of Kurt Vile or Adam Granduciel. Other songs have a distinctly cinematic tone and can easily translate into emotionally ambiguous drama.

Invisible Ink by Charlie Hall | Photo by Dylan Itkin for WXPN

Hall is undoubtedly a showman. But on the second night of two sold-out shows at Sun Shinhwa, he proved more than willing to share the stage. Last year, he told Magnet magazine invisible ink It is “an exercise in generosity and love,” and that was evident throughout this mesmerizing concert. On stage, he joined members of The War on Drugs (bassist Dave Hartley, keyboardist Robbie Bennett, pedal steel player Anthony LaMarca) and several other amazing musicians (drummer Nazi El Ebo, keyboardist Corey Bernhard, percussionist Daniel Villarreal and multi-talented vocalist Rosalie take the stage together.

As the lead singer, Hall was casual and often hilarious, joking that he was extremely reluctant to know the outcome of the Celtics game that was going on that night; his son ended up calling out the score. It may come as a surprise to many that the beloved drummer only played guitar for the entire show, but the band’s rhythm section couldn’t be stronger. Local legend Ebo had become a jazz star while playing with greats like Joshua Redman, and his technique really shined in this completely different musical environment. Playing a clean yet spectacular set, his perfect pockets keep the band grounded, while Hartley punctuates the dreamy soundscapes with low-end melodies.

Invisible Ink by Charlie Hall | Photo by Dylan Itkin for WXPN

Between songs, Hall chimed in to share the inspiration for his songs, which stemmed from experiences in Maine and Connecticut. In keeping with the family atmosphere of the evening, he recalled the joy of watching one son teach another how to ride a bike. The music is deeply textured but not overly busy, sometimes upbeat and sometimes melancholy. Hall took the microphone to perform the final song of the night: a cover of The Lovin’ Spoonful’s “Didn’t Have To Do It.” He explains that his obsession with the track started during a recent flight from India. On “Sun Myth,” Hall and his team stretched the song, creating a six-minute space saga filled with floating keyboard melodies and yearning pedal steel. It was the perfect ending to an evening of collaborative musical magic.

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