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Communist Daughter backstory as moving as their music
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By Selena Fragassi
For Sun-Times Media
Behind almost every great band is an even better story—and the one of Minneapolis indie folk swooners Communist Daughter is that of trailblazing and triumph. Much like the desperado Neutral Milk Hotel song the band is named for, Communist Daughter was born from a bleak belly that became full from its own impending existence.
Just a few years ago, founder and front man Johnny Solomon was at the prime of his career in the Twin Cities underground, leading his band Friends Like These to banner moments. But his personal struggles with addiction and run-ins with the law brought on the demise of the band and, with it, Solomon’s spirit to continue on with his craft.
That was until this Johnny met his June, a young singer by the name of Molly Moore who promised to sing with Solomon if he vowed to start again clean. He did, and Molly’s vow turned into a blissful union of sweet man-needs-woman harmonies, pensive winter lyrics and carefully conjoined guitar-and-piano compositions that kick up the dirt trails on roving journeys that are ready to be told to the trees under the light of a campfire.
Braveheart songs like the long-distance swim “Heart Attack” and the whimsical playground “Avery” run the emotional odometer by the time you’ve finished listening to any of the band’s full recordings (2010 LP Soundtrack To The End or more recent EPs Something Wicked This Way Comes and Lions & Lambs). Together, they present a more down-to-earth Arcade Fire and a more gripping Of Monsters and Men while nicely filling the void left by The Civil Wars’ breakup—something we don’t have to worry about with Solomon these days, as he expounds on the song “Speed of Sound” with his now-wife Molly: “The life I wanted years ago is maybe not the life I should have found but I still live for sound.”
With Carrie Rodriguez
When: 7:30 p.m., February 19
Where: SPACE, 1245 Chicago Ave., Evanston
Info: (847) 492.8860; ticketweb.com