Moses Sumney’s Tiny Desk Concert Is A Mesmerizing Moment Of Intimately Looped Soul

11.29.17 5 months ago

Following the release of his stunning debut album Aromanticism this past September, enchanting chamber soul singer Moses Sumney hit the road, bringing his beautifully ornate songs across North America and Europe.

While on tour Sumney made a stop at NPR’s Tiny Desk. The video from that performance is available today and you can watch it above.

Sumney treats the Tiny Desk team to three excellent Aromanticism cuts: “Doomed,” “Quarrel,” and “Plastic.”

“Doomed” begins with Sumney perched at a piano, singing the song’s opening lines with the spare accompaniment to perfectly establish a forlorn mood. A spectral guitar line appears and then gets looped, allowing Sumney to leave his piano and join up with the rest of his band — Sam Gendel (sax/guitar), Mike Haldeman (guitar) and Brandee Younger (harp). With only a mic in his hand, Sumney crafts a percussive loop of his own, coaxing the rest of the players to join in.

Of the “Doomed” performance, Tiny Desk host Bob Boilen said it was “one of the most inspired 8-minute stretches I’ve witnessed here at the Tiny Desk.”

Though it would’ve been hard to top, the remarkable consistency with which “Quarrel” and “Plastic” lived up to not only Sumney & Co’s brilliant introduction, but the original recordings themselves, is remarkable.

Aromanticism is out now on Jagjaguwar.

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