We've got a MUST LISTEN this morning courtesy of Strand Of Oaks, the nom de guerre of Pennsylvania Hebrew Dayschool teacher Timothy Showalter. "End In Flames" is a pensive, sometimes heartbreaking lament on years lost to love, to age and to tragedy, with an enchanting mandolin line meant to tug whatever innocence is left back into Showalter's life. It's the incredible lead track to the forthcoming Leave Ruin, which hits stores on Tuesday via La Societe Expeditionnaire.
In recent years, Showalter's been through a trying break-up, a fire that saw his house burn down and destroy all his possessions, and a subsequent bout with homelessness. Like all great art, though, that difficult stretch led to an intensely therapeutic, ultimately triumphant album in Leave Ruin. Showalter's wavering voice recalls Neil Young and Ryan Adams, themselves no strangers to a heart-on-sleeve mentality and a willingness to let vulnerability crack through their music.
Download "End In Flames" above, repeat it incessantly like we have this morning, and order Leave Ruin at La Soc's online store.