Listener is a three-piece outfit that was formed in 2007 after vocalist Dan Smith penned a series of narratives about a traveling knife salesman. Originally written for his solo hip-hop poetry endeavor, the songs needed a firmer backbone to stand on their own, so Smith recruited his friend Christin Nelson, who helped rework the songs into Listener's debut album, Return to Struggleville. Officially released in 2009, the album is packed with the beginnings of a new, raw sound that Smith describes as "talk music." With each subsequent release, including 2013's Time Is A Machine, Listener honed in on the new genre, offering a form of spoken word mixed into hip-hop and, with the addition of drummer Kris Rochelle, rock n' roll.
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