The U Street Music Hall has a strict no-photography policy. But Snuggies are still allowed. Consider curling up with one during tonight’s show. Swedish producer The Field recently released his third album, Looping State of Mind, following a pair of delightful ambient works, 2007’s From Here We Go Sublime and 2009’s Yesterday and Today. A few years ago, The Field (Axel Willner) regarded himself as a mere beneficiary of North American listeners’ growing appreciation of electronic music. He told the Canadian magazine Exclaim, “I think more people in North America are getting into pure electronic music where you don’t have to have the rock elements.” But was it us—craning our necks toward another ephemeral trend—or did he just make a splendid record? Deeper-digging American listeners have enjoyed atmospheric, gauzy post-rock and shoegazer music since the ’80s; before that, plenty of Yanks dug melty prog and space rock. The Field beautifully captures that glowing aura with different equipment. (Though he isn’t all digital—Willner did collaborate with Battles’ drummer John Stanier on Yesterday and Today.) Looping State of Mind, particularly its title track, is furniture music of the highest order; easy to ignore, but hard to forget. “Sheer bliss”: It’s a shoegazer cliché (and the name of a creamy coconut milk ice cream), but The Field has galvanized the term yet again.
The show begins at 7 p.m. at U Street Music Hall, 1115 U Street NW. $8.