We awake to find Southworth opening up a new song bag. Falling into the ellipse amidst torn fabric, conspicuous birds, shadows in a looking glass; not only is everything here a sign - everything is a miracle. With miracles comes transformation, and consequently destruction, followed by release wherein tears distill the greatest miracle of all: a song.
Southworth is an archaeologist of love, sifting through relics and artifacts, the compost of this world’s memory, revealing stories that feel caught in slow motion, in mid-air, no beginnings or endings. Everything has always existed in this chaotic present; once distant stars now the altars of Tin Pan-Schubert Alley.
The songs of Miracle in the Night read like a stoic’s recital of an untraceable lieder. Carefully, each is a gradual, unfurling cadence. You may recognize his longtime band ‘The South Seas’ - gentle and steady, calm and restrained, playing just before dawn, a solstice cabaret in a megalithic tower. The endless red curtains from the Lynch dimension rise and fall around you.
This is his 12th full-length release, arriving on the hooves of 2016’s Small Town Water Tower, which crosshatched a glam-pop ooze into the rigorous comparative mythology of 2014’s epic Niagara. Similarly rich with symbol and folklore and pristine melodies, Miracle in the Night offers us a delicacy of fantasy, focusing our attention into a state of constant revelation, alive in song.
- Thomas Gill