Premiere: Blitzen Trapper’s ‘Be A Bird’ Video Ditches Asphalt-Entropy For The Wilderness

Portland experimental/country band Blitzen Trapper has been around for some many years now it’s hard to remember a time before their particular bizarro-folk style. Their prolific output helped solidify the sound of the early 2000s, and even a decade or so in, they’re still fascinating, inventive and appealing — even when pulling out artifacts from their own past.

“Be A Bird” — which we’re premiering today — is a cut off their special Record Store Day release Unreleased Recordings Volume One: Waking Bullets At Breakneck Speed, which will was recorded in Portland, Oregon at the Telegraph Building during the 2006 sessions for Wild Mountain Nation and Furr. The long-shelved record will be out tomorrow in conjunction with the vinyl-lovers holiday of sorts, Record Store Day. Frontman Eric Earley shared some background on the impetus behind this album:

“During this time I wasn’t making records per se, just recording songs, lots of songs. Many of them eventually ending up on Wild Mountain Nation and Furr. This was at the old Telegraph Building on MLK where I was living when the weather was bad. I’d be up all night recording, days sleeping and wandering the city on foot or on my beat up 10-speed. I was trying to incorporate sounds and noises from the city, that feeling of asphalt-entropy. I remember taking a break out on the street in the middle of the night and seeing a UFO, a strange group of lights that glided high above and then shot away faster than my eyes could see. I chased it for a few blocks but it was gone. About then a sort of soundtrack started to coalesce (at least in my head), a sci-fi spaghetti western type album with cowboy elements. Waking Bullets at Breakneck Speed it was called. I never released it, Nation got picked up and then Furr happened, just one of several weird records that got swept under the rug.”

As for the video, it’s a black and white clip that distills that asphalt-entropy he’s talking about with some soaring shots of wilderness and mountains. Watch it up top and check out the artwork and tracklist for Unreleased Recordings Volume One: Waking Bullets At Breakneck Speed below.

New West Records

1. “Intro”
2. “Be A Bird”
3. “Kings Of The Range”
4. “Crackerjack Tattoo”
5. “The Gunslinger”
6. “Dime”
7. “The Quiet Noise”
8. “Stack Stones Baby”
9. “Drifter”
10. “Crushing The Wheat”
11. “Fun And Fame”
12. “The Abduction”
13. “Cowboy Cassette”


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