US: Dustin Kensrue announces third solo album, Desert Dreaming

US: Dustin Kensrue announces third solo album, Desert Dreaming

Dustin Kensrue, singer-songwriter (and frontman of Thrice) has announced the upcoming release of his third solo album, Desert Dreaming, out April 5 via BMG. The album, an epic alt-country masterpiece, summoning the spirit of the American southwest, is flush with tremolo guitar and shuffling percussion that echo off canyon walls.

Accompanying the announcement is the release of Desert Dreaming’s first single, ‘Death Valley Honeymoon’, which details the wild but true story of how Kensrue’s grandparents met and recounts their honeymoon in the seemingly unlikely destination of Death Valley.

“There were multiple moments while writing that I felt like I was channeling my grandparents’ spirits in one way or another,” says Kensrue. “Having Cat Clyde sing my grandmother’s verse in the song really brought the whole thing home for me and she absolutely nailed it. Even the actor who plays my grandpa in the video showed up on set and gave me and my sister a start when we saw how eerily his face and smile made him resemble my mom’s dad.

There are things we can only learn in encounters in the hinterlands, both of the world and of our souls,” claims Kensrue. “It’s so easy to miss what’s right in front of us when we are set on finding something else and looking through mental and spiritual lenses that filter out so much.”

The self-produced album is Kensrue’s epic love letter to the southwest. He takes us on a personal travel journey through his own experiences in learning how to open his eyes to the world right in front of him. “The setting really is the main character of the record,” claims Kensrue as he approached the songs like a Western novelist, filling them with details of the desert–the sound of coyotes howling in the distance, the smell of sage and lilac in the dry wind, the lure of hidden treasures in the hills.

Inspired partially by childhood trips spent with his grandparents in the Mojave Desert, these ten tunes mix biography, history, and fiction and were recorded by Kensrue with the help of collaborators like upright bassist Seth Richardson, pedal steel guitarist Abe Levy, and drummer James McAlister. Reflecting on themes including learning to experience the world as it is and not as you expect it to be, Kensrue weaves timeless tales of people too blinded by goldlust or misplaced obligation to see the riches all around them, and of souls quietly moved by the stark beauty of the desert landscape.


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