Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Michael Saltsman
This July 4th performance by Field Report was a suicide mission. Performing at the hallowed Codfish Hollow Barn in Maquoketa, Iowa, for the second Barn on the 4th event in three years, Christopher Porterfield and the rest of the Milwaukee-based band wrapped themselves into dress shirts, vests and suits as the temperature that day rose to close to 100 degrees. Inside the barn, crammed to the gills with over 800 people there to see a bill that consisted of Field Report, Counting Crows, Filligar, Foreign Fields and Dave Godowsky, the heat was almost overbearing. It was a cooker and it seemed to make the Field Report set even more important.
"These songs are communions for those who have felt themselves choke on time and on the grace that could have pulled them through if they'd just possessed it. The people that move slowly through these songs are occupying the dim nights where the only thing to do is sip on 50-cent beer and look at the photos in your wallet that you haven't changed in more years that you can count - of the bygones and mostly of the people whose love for you has changed too much to even know where to start. There's nothing that resembles the way things used to be. The hearts - they've all changed. They've all gone on to live for other things. They've followed around the same bodies - just because they have to, the attachment and all, but they've wandered and they've strayed. The older I get, the more I think I understand what can make me fall to my knees in admiration - because of the pure splendor that it radiates. Field Report gets us to that place. When Porterfield sings about being "crippled by joy," it's also his way of telling us about being crippled by pain as well. It feels like there's something good and happy trying to squeeze out of these songs - songs that are wearing the uneven and rotting floor out of that house of memories - but it tends only to peek."
It's the way that we felt about the debut session that the band taped with us in March, down in Austin, during South By Southwest week and damned if we didn't feel it all over again, as these songs - from one of the best albums released in 2012, came even more alive.
Field Report Debut Daytrotter Session
Field Report Official Site