The Bowery Presents
Offa Rex

The Decemberists and Olivia Chaney are

Offa Rex

Zachary Cale (solo)

Wed, July 26, 2017

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Town Hall

New York, NY

$54.50, $44.50, $34.50

This event is all ages

Offa Rex
Offa Rex



On July 7, Nonesuch Records will release The Queen of Hearts, the debut album from Offa Rex, an adventurous new project featuring English singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Olivia Chaney and The Decemberists. Produced and recorded by Tucker Martine (Modest Mouse, My Morning Jacket, Neko Case) and Colin Meloy at Martine’s studio in Portland, OR, and mostly arranged by Olivia Chaney, the thirteen tracks on The Queen of Hearts draw largely on traditional English-Irish-Scottish repertoire to create a transatlantic musical conversation that flirts with psychedelia and folk rock while maintaining its own inimitable identity. Pre-orders are available now from iTunes and the Nonesuch Store, where the title track may be downloaded instantly; Nonesuch Store pre-orders also include an exclusive print, a limited number of which will be autographed by the musicians.

Listen to Olivia Chaney and The Decemberists’ Colin Meloy discuss the project with Bob Boilen for NPR’s All Songs +1:

And watch a studio performance video for the title track “The Queen of Hearts” at NPR Music:

The origins of Offa Rex can be traced to a tweet. Meloy, a fan of Chaney’s 2015 Nonesuch debut, The Longest River, struck up a dialog with her over Twitter, which eventually led to her supporting The Decemberists on a U.S. tour. Chaney says: “Every so often [on the tour] Colin and I would have these fleeting but quite intense conversations about songwriting and singing traditional songs. One night he asked me, grinning, ‘Have you ever thought of having a backing group? We’ll be your Albion Dance Band.’”

Meloy adds: “There’s this weird relationship between British and American music, this interesting trade and theft that goes back and forth. My hope was that if we—the neophytes, the dilettantes, the pretenders—brought Olivia to Portland to work with Tucker, perhaps these traditional British songs would be infused with something different.”

From the heady harpsichord swirl that engulfs album opener “The Queen of Hearts” to the warm, delicate drone of “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” or the cold, grey riff that heralds “Sheepcrook and Black Dog,” it’s evident that Offa Rex is different indeed, upending its folk roots and imbuing these songs with exploratory verve.

Offa Rex will tour this summer, including performances at the Newport Folk Festival, Town Hall in New York, and at The Aladdin in Portland. They will also be performing at Travelers’ Rest, The Decemberists’ two-day curated festival in Missoula, MT on August 12 and 13. Additionally, Olivia Chaney will support The Decemberists during their August tour, during which she will join the band on stage to perform songs from The Queen of Hearts. Chaney will also do a few solo shows around these dates. Complete list of shows are below.

The Queen of Hearts
Blackleg Miner
The Gardener
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
Flash Company
Old Churchyard
Constant Billy (Oddington) / I’ll Go Enlist (Sherborne)
Willie o’ Winsbury
Bonny May
Sheepcrook and Black Dog
To Make You Stay

7/23 — Portland, OR @ Aladdin Theater
7/26 — New York, NY @ The Town Hall
7/28 — Philadelphia, PA @XPonential Festival
7/29 — Newport, RI @ Newport Folk Festival
8/08 — Vancouver, BC @ Orpheum Theater*
8/09 — Calgary, AB @ MacEwan Hall*
8/12 — Missoula, MT @ Travelers’ Rest Festival
8/13 — Missoula, MT @ Travelers’ Rest Festival
8/15 — Salt Lake City, UT @ Red Butte Garden*
8/17 — Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater*
8/19 — Jacksonville, OR @ Britt Festival*

*Olivia Chaney opening for The Decemberists’ shows


Zachary Cale (solo)
Zachary Cale (solo)
Zachary Cale is a NYC based songwriter/musician originally hailing from the small southern town of Enon, Louisiana. His music ranges from lyrically driven balladry over American Primitive inspired guitar playing to Cosmic Country music and cerebral folk rock to darker torch songs with Western themes.

His first album 'Outlander Sessions' was released by New World Of Sound records in 2005. Recorded with a borrowed acoustic guitar on a 4-track cassette machine.

For the past decade Cale has been releasing records through his own imprint All Hands Electric among other small labels. In 2008 Cale's second solo album 'Walking Papers' was released, an album that fuses highly poetic imagery across stark balladry. Marking a huge step forward from his debut, 'Walking Papers' displays Cale's progression from lo-fi acoustic busker to a songwriter of visionary scope. It was recorded by Kevin McMahon (Titus Andronicus, Swans) at Jett Studio, previously known as the historic Bearsville Sound Studio where albums by The Band, Bobby Charles, NRBQ and Muddy Waters were recorded. Upon its release Cale was described by New Jersey's WFMU as a "songwriter's songwriter" with a writing style comparable to the greats like Bob Dylan, Townes Van Zandt, and Leonard Cohen.

Before its release Cale started a rock band called Illuminations. All Hands Electric issued their debut album 'See-Saw' the same year that 'Walking Papers' was released. The straight-ahead power pop inspired rock n roll band showcased a different side of Cale's songwriting. Cale began using electric guitars, adopting a style and delivery that aligns itself to roots inspired rock bands such as Big Star, VU and Crazy Horse.

2011 saw the release of Cale's first critically acclaimed album 'Noise Of Welcome.' Upon its release, PopMatters proclaimed Cale as "the best singer songwriter working today. Period." The album is a perfect blend of Cale's penchant for cosmic American rock styles that he used in his work with Illuminations and the dark mystic balladry of his solo albums. That year Cale toured the U.S. with a full band, and in solo performances across Europe.

'Blue Rider' was released in 2013 to great fan fare. Praised by Pitchfork, Spin, American Songwriter, NY Magazine, and Pop Matters the album features a stripped down acoustic sound implementing country blues tunings adopted from guitar legends Skip James and John Fahey, coupled with Cale's haunting vocal delivery and enigmatic lyrics. With the addition of ethereal synth lines and electric textures over it's acoustic foundation the album exudes an atmosphere that is otherworldly yet traditionally grounded. Upon its release Cale became a member of the NYC based Crystal Stilts, joining the band as their second guitarist as well as supporting them on a cross country US tour.

On stage Cale performs both solo and with a full electric band. In concert his melodically complex guitar playing has been compared to Neil Young and Bert Jansch with nods to pre-war Piedmont and Ragtime players such as Blind Willie McTell and Mississippi John Hurt. In a full band setting Cale has been known to strap on an electric, adopting a style and delivery that flies closer to country-tinged rock songwriters such as Alex Chilton, Ray Davies and Tom Petty. The intensity of his solo sets hold crowds spellbound, while the electric band sets veer into a mild psychedelia that's equally captivating.

Cale has played hundreds of shows traversing both the US and Europe, sharing stages with Sharon Van Etten, Robyn Hitchcock, Neko Case, Six Organs of Admittance, Deer Tick, Ryley Walker, Justin Townes Earle, Jessica Pratt, The Black Swans, War on Drugs, Steve Gunn, Villagers, Hiss Golden Messenger, Foxygen, Wooden Wand, Michael Chapman, William Tyler, Chris Forsyth, Angel Olsen, Dan Melchior, and many others.

'Duskland' is Cale's fifth album under his own name, an album that employs full band arrangements and western motifs to further chronicle Cale's haunted vision of Americana. The album was released August 7th, 2015 via No Quarter.

Zachary Cale resides in New York City.
Venue Information:
Town Hall
123 West 43rd Street
New York, NY, 10036