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Gabriel and the hounds

A last minute email on the eve of my final departure from New York as a visitor brings us to Brooklyn, just south of Vinegar Hill, to visit with Gabriel and his ‘hound du jour’, Bryan Devendorf of The National.

We brave the Brooklyn-Queens expressway to occupy the backyard studio of Aaron Dessner, an oasis tucked away in Ditmas Park, and the birthplace of some of the year’s most beautiful recordings.

Gabe thumbs through an assortment of vintage guitars that share a wall with a gold record for High Violet. They make their way into the studio and begin as we stalk from the control room.


In the bowels of a storage facility, surrounded by floating drum beats and the looping riffs of bands buried further in the numbered rooms, Gabe treats us to a cut from the new record, not to be released for a month and brand new territory for both of them live.

A drone is set, and they begin.