Strand of Oaks: December 4, 2014 Bowery Ballroom – FLAC/MP3/Full Set Streaming

December 7, 2014


Eric PH reports:

To chart Strand of Oaks’ meteoric success in 2014, you need only look at the New York City venues they’ve played this past year: Piano’s in May, Mercury Lounge in June, The Bowery Ballroom in December. That Mercury Lounge gig doubled as record release show and tour opener for HEAL, released a couple days before. At the time, it was Strand of Oaks’ biggest NYC show yet. So it’s a testament to the band’s growing popularity that they close out the tour and the year with an even bigger, packed show at The Bowery Ballroom.

HEAL is Tim Showalter’s fourth album as Strand of Oaks, and the appeal is multifaceted: a compelling backstory of musical hardship, a car crash, and a broken heart; the allure of Showalter’s heart-on-his-sleeve lyrics; a guest appearance by J. Mascis (“Goshen ‘97”); and a stirring tribute to Jason Molina (“JM”). The album recalls Bruce Springsteen’s better days—and aptly, the Strand of Oaks show begins with his “Born in the U.S.A.” blasting as the band members take the stage; that song relevant not only to Showalter’s music and lyrical themes, but also to the night’s protests happening only blocks away from the intersection of Bowery and Delancy. Showalter takes a moment to remind the crowd of the dangers of cynicism, and while you might be tempted to label Showalter as earnest or emotional, his graciousness and sincerity is disarming, no doubt an antidote to the you-must-be-this-hip-to-enter music scene that, admittedly, is my usual fare.

The Bowery set captures Strand of Oaks playing all of HEAL, “Diamond Drill” from 2012’s Dark Shores, and two covers. Here, the album centerpiece, “JM,” stretches past the nine-minute mark, building to a cathartic crescendo. The more succinct pop rock of the hits (or as Showalter puts it, “the Wayne’s World level headbangers”), “Goshen ‘97” and “Shut In” gave the audience no other option but to rock out. This year has also seen Strand of Oaks get no small amount of press from cover songs. For the A.V. Club’s Undercover Series, the band pulled off a surprising cover of Asia’s “Heat of the Moment.” Here we find Showalter doing a solo take on Ryan Adams’ “My Wrecking Ball” and a rousing full band performance of the ’Mats’ “Alex Chilton.” Strand of Oaks have set the bar high with a banner year in 2014 and I’m anticipating more from Showalter and crew in 2015.

I recorded this set from our usual location at Bowery, just left of the soundboard, with acidjack’s Schoeps MK4V cardiod mics and a soundboard feed from Bowery’s FOH, Kenny. The sound is terrific. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3] | [FLAC

Stream the complete set:

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Strand of Oaks
The Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by Eric PH

Soundboard (engineer: Kenny) + Schoeps MK4V > KCY > Z-PFA >> Roland R-26 > 2xWAV(24/48) > Audacity 2.0.5 (fades, EQ, tracking, amplify, downsample, dither) > FLAC (level 8)

Tracks [81:57]
01. HEAL
02. Same Emotions
03. Last to Swim
04. [banter]
05. Goshen ’97
06. For Me
07. JM
08. [banter]
09. My Wrecking Ball [Ryan Adams]
10. Diamond Drill
11. [banter]
12. Woke Up to the Light
13. Shut In
14. [banter]
15. Plymouth
16. [banter]
17. Sterling
18. [banter]
19. Wait For Love
20. [encore break]
21. Alex Chilton [The Replacements]
22. Mirage Year

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Strand of Oaks, visit their website, and buy Heal and the band’s other records directly from the band here.

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3 Responses to Strand of Oaks: December 4, 2014 Bowery Ballroom – FLAC/MP3/Full Set Streaming

  1. Mike
    December 7, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    This is fantastic, thank you so much!

  2. RizzBizz
    December 7, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    I was right next to where you set up and was super excited you were going to capture what became a tremendous night of music. The audience couldn’t have been more respectful. Thanks for sharing what we heard with the rest of the Strand Of Oaks fans around the globe.

  3. acidjack
    December 8, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    Glad you dug it! Hope you enjoy the recording.

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