When you stumble across an album as commanding as Pearls to Swine, which was released on September 9, you can’t help but pay attention. Every single song hangs in the air. The album begs to be played on repeat.
It didn’t take very long for the crowd that gathered around the small stage at the Resident in Los Angeles on Saturday night to be pulled into the atmosphere Adam Torres and his band created. The moment he began singing, the entire bar fell silent and still. No one moved or made a sound. They were completely present. But it wasn’t just the hauntingly beautiful falsetto of Torres’ voice that had everyone, including myself, in awe.
When I close my eyes, I can still hear and feel Aisha Burns’ warm violin accompaniments filling up the room. The way her violin underpins Torres’ voice is something I’ve never experienced before. It was unforgettable. Dailey Toliver is sitting to my left holding his bass on his lap, casually playing a few notes on the piano in between strums. Thor Harris keeps the beat, bringing percussive undertones to join the spacious landscape of soulful guitar solos and hopeful melodies.
“This is a song about a werewolf,” Torres said, before playing “Some Beast Will Find You by Name.” A few other songs they performed live included “Where I’m Calling From,” “Juniper Arms,” "Morning Rain" and “City Limits.”
The high pitched frequency of the Austin, Texas-based singer-songwriter’s voice is not one that I’d typically be drawn to. However, the dynamic way in which he’s able to alter the inflection and timbre of it while telling such evocative stories is enough to make anyone stop whatever it is they’re doing and listen.
Adam Torres is signed to Fat Possum Records. His sophomore album Pearls to Swine may be purchased here.