Known Objects

by Rebecca Pronsky

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about

After extensive touring behind 2013’s release “Only Daughter” (which made The Telegraph’s Top 10 Country Albums of 2013 list), Rebecca Pronsky and her longtime producer & guitarist Rich Bennett took some time off from the road to open a recording studio in their hometown of Brooklyn, NY.

“Known Objects” was originally conceived as a duo album, but once the recording studio was up and running, the environment proved too tempting to stop at just voice and guitars. With so many local musicians — many of them long-time friends — coming in to work on recording projects, Bennett couldn’t resist asking them to stick around and try out a part here and there on Pronsky’s new songs. Surrounded by an ever-growing flock of talented special guests, and no strict schedule or deadlines, Pronsky and Bennett were able to take their time with “Known Objects.” Pronsky’s songwriting and vocal agility shine as never before and Bennett’s production and arranging skills flourish.

An expansive, almost existential, feeling pervades “Known Objects”. “Shadow” and “Gondwanaland” both draw inspiration from readings on the big bang and dark matter. “Bag of Bones” is a cautionary tale about artistic self-doubt. “A.E.” brings a sense of wonder and sadness to newly published revelations in the Amelia Earhart story. The album’s only cover is an adventurous interpretation of “Heatwave” by 1980s Scottish pop pioneers The Blue Nile, propelled by ethereal plucked piano strings. Listeners of the record are treated to intricate cello arrangements performed by NYC mainstay Serena Jost, lush 4-part harmonies sung by Lucy Wainwright Roche, Greta Gertler, Emily Hurst (Las Rubias Del Norte), and Deidre Struck (Lascivious Biddies), and delicate, atmospheric textures played by eminent jazz guitarist Ben Monder, who last recorded with David Bowie on “Blackstar.”

credits

released May 6, 2016

All songs by Rebecca Pronsky
except “Heatwave” by Robert Bell & Paul Buchanan
Produced by Rich Bennett

Recorded & Mixed at Acme Hall Studios
Engineers: Scott Solter, Rich Bennett
Mixed by Rich Bennett
Mastered by Justin Colletti at Joe Lambert Mastering
Art Direction & Design: Jen Cogliantry

Rebecca Pronsky: vocals, acoustic guitar
Rich Bennett: acoustic and electric guitars, piano, bass
Spencer Cohen: drums and percussion
Dan Shuman: upright bass on “Snowing Sideways”
Serena Jost: cello on “Blue Skies” and “A.E.”
Ben Monder: guitars on “Shadow” and “Blue Skies”
Greta Gertler: piano on “Did You Know”
Karen Dahlstrom: vocals on “Shadow”
Tim Byrnes: flugelhorn on “Did You Know”
Dave Richman: drums on “Nothing Yet”
Emily Hurst, Lucy Wainwright Roche, Serena Jost, Deb Poppel, Greta Gertler, Deidre Struck: Chorus on “Gondwanaland” and “Blue Skies”

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about

Rebecca Pronsky Brooklyn, New York

Rebecca Pronsky is a born and raised Brooklynite whose music is “as urban as it is rural, not afraid to be sophisticated” (Maverick). Her songs are gritty and dark, layered and dreamy, bravely disobeying the usual conventions of the Americana genre. She has been described as an artist whose “voice conveys the wisdom of experience over a wash of noirishly twangy guitars” (NPR). ... more

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