Song of the Day: Calexico - Falling From The Sky

Song of the Day
06/11/2015
Jacob Webb
photo by Jairo Zavala

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is “Falling From The Sky” by Calexico from the 2015 album Edge of the Sun on Anti-.

Calexico - Falling From The Sky (MP3)

Appropriately named for a California border town, Calexico walks the line between Latin and American music, imbuing their brand of atmospheric country rock with Tejano and jazz elements. Both alumni of the Tucson, Arizona group Giant Sand, drummer John Convertino and guitarist Joey Burns formed Calexico in 1995, and across their twenty years as a band, their output has reflected the genre-blurring aesthetic of their music. In addition to releasing eight consistently rich studio albums, Convertino and Burns have toured extensively, both as a headliner and a backing band, released a collaborative EP with Iron and Wine, backed Neko Case on portions of her last three albums, were chosen for a split 7" with Arcade Fire, and wrote the soundtrack for the 2011 film The Guard. The band still has that adventurous, collaborative spirit on their eight album, this year's Edge of the Sun, which features more guest appearances and more input from the band's other members than any of their others releases. "Falling From The Sky", the album's opening track, is a soaring, dusty , aided in its sunset-scraping chorus with guest vocals from Band of Horses' Ben Bridwell. Supported by stinging brass and buzzy analog synthesizers, Burns sounds as anthemic as he's ever been, pushing through one last chorus – "Tired of waitingClouds will be breaking/Soon you'll escape and/Someday we'll find a place in the sky" – with a gusto that belies the depth of the song's textures. Dazzling from start to finish, "Falling From The Sky" is one of Calexico's biggest sounding songs, and it reaches that scale without losing any of the layered richness of their best work.

Calexico will be in the Pacific Northwest next month opening for The Decemberists, including a show at Marymoor Park on July 16th. Get tickets to that all-ages gig, keep up with the band on their website and Facebook, and watch the video for "Falling From The Sky", starring their fellow songwriter Jose Gonzalez.

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