When Liz Harris first started releasing records as Grouper in 2005, it was largely at odds with what was going on around her: slow, quiet, somewhat eery and tentative, existing in a self-contained soundworld of its own. By the time her classic Dragging A Dead Deer Up A Hill album surfaced on the Type label 3 years later though, we were all wise and baying for whatever recordings Harris might grace us with.
Grouper live shows demand your attention. They’re quiet and yet have the power to silence and focus a whole room. Minimal music made with minimal means yet maximum impact. Delicate, barely shifting music that somehow grabs you by the throat and glues you to the spot. “Achingly beautiful” is a phrase frequently reprised to describe Harris’s music. “An ancient air” is what Pitchfork described Dragging.. as having. Others cite narcotic dissociation, self-imposed isolation, suggest Flying Saucer Attack as her nearest musical relation. It all, though, points to the same enthrallment we all feel when subject to the sound of Grouper.