Bob Carpenter came close to being a major star. He received a glowing mention in Rolling Stone in 1970, recorded an album for Warner Brothers and had his songs recorded by Emmylou Harris, Billy Joe Shaver and others. But Silent Passage, his lone solo album recorded in 1974, was pressed and ready to ship when contract negotiations shelved the record indefinitely. By the time things were resolved it was the end of the 70's singer-songwriter boom and Warner had moved on. The album saw release by the Canadian label Stony Plain in 1984 but has been out of print until now.
Ah, the live album: often a tool for bands looking to wiggle out of contracts or perhaps, squeeze a few more pennies from a loyal fanbase. Rare is it a work of art. Inspired by these singular instances (Grayfolded, The Grateful Dead; Sonic Death, Sonic Youth; In Search of Spaces, Flying Saucer Attack) C. Spencer Yeh, the lone constant of the long-running Burning Star Core project, conceptualized Papercuts Theater: one long piece (broken into four movements) culled from over sixty live performances, spanning years and continents. These formerly disparate relics of time and space now exist as one: a sonic document of the present.
The annals of music history are overowing with gifted guitar players whose egos prevented themfrom reaching their full potential: rather than being content to be exceptional members of a band,they instead create unexceptional records as leaders in vain attempts to prove their worth as soloartists.Guitarist-songwriter-bandleader Chris Forsyth is the rare exception that proves the rule. Rightfullybut somewhat reductively known as a guitar player par excellence, one listen to Forsyth's latestdouble album, All Time Present, reveals that while his dazzling musicianship can always be takenfor granted, it's hardly the whole story. Forsyth's albums-presented with his Solar Motel Band ornominally solo, as here-have always been evidence of a musical mind brimming with ideas.Forsyth is joined on All Time Present by bassist Peter Kerlin and multi-instrumentalist Shawn EdwardHansen, both longtime foils; new to the group is Ryan Jewell, a sublimely talented drummer whosemusicality is seemingly bottomless. With this group, Forsyth is at the peak of his powers.All Time Present is the rare double album that goes by in a ash. Indeed, one of Forsyth's greateststrengths as a composer and bandleader is his consistent ability to sustain interest even when athis most brazenly improvisational: he drifts, but he never meanders. On All Time Present, Forsyth'sparticular drift is like that of a proverbial wallflower with a sudden surge of unselfconscious courage:toward the dance floor.
After a year of touring, The Solar Motel Band returned to the studio last spring with Jeff Ziegler (War on Drugs, Kurt Vile) to put to tape the massive and immense The Rarity of Experience. This double album (officially The Rarity of Experience part I & II) sees Forsyth and his band stretching out their sound beyond anywhere they've gone before, touching on all corners of progressive, psychedelic and post-rock.
Intensity Ghost is a follow-up to last years critically acclaimed Solar Motel album, which made year end lists at The New Yorker, Uncut Magazine and Popmatters and provoked ecstatic comparisons; from Television and Neil Young & Crazy Horse to Richard Thompson and The Grateful Dead. Solar Motel came together as a solo album but the band Forsyth assembled to tour the record - bassist Peter Kerlin, guitarist Paul Sukeena (Spacin'), and drummer Steve Urgo (ex-War on Drugs) - took things to another level and quickly became a powerhouse. Forsyth brought the group into the studio in late 2013 to capture what became Intensity Ghost, a 5-track masterwork of grace and power.
It's hard to imagine who Forsyth's contemporaries might be, but it's always been that way: the greats tend to feel a little out-of-plumb with their moment (only hindsight lets us see it otherwise), and Forsyth's music has been sparring with some large forces from the beginning. He's always united the homely with the astral, the abstract with the visceral in his Solar Motels and Intensity Ghosts. There's something different about Dreaming In The Non-Dream, though. There's a fresh economy involved here, a sense, strange as this is to say about a record with two songs longer than eleven minutes, of not a note wasted. Despite psychedelic leanings, Forsyth's records have always trained toward concision -- plenty of space, yet never slack -- but these tunes erupt with startling swiftness, then spend the rest of their quick-burning lives teasing multiple moods and patterns out of relatively simple materials.
Cian Nugent is a guitar player from Dublin, Ireland whose music combines personal passions, such as suburban/coastal blues, traditional music, 1960s & ’70s singer-songwriters, psychedelic rock,critically jazz ambitions and 20th century composition. Born With The Caul is his first full length with 4 piece-band The Cosmos and follows his acclaimed 2011 solo effort Doubles. Like that album, Caul is comprised of a few expansive, developed pieces (three, to be exact). Led by Nugent’s guitar playing â€“ always inviting, subdued and unpredictable â€“ the band takes these songs into darker, richer territories opening a whole new galaxy for this young guitar player to explore.
Words that come to mind while listening to Coconuts debut album: ugliness, despair, un-marketability. Theirs is a sound rooted in inherent darkness, influenced by early-80’s post-punk, no wave (fellow Australians The Birthday Party come to mind) and the bleakest of world-views. It’s an almost disorienting experience, created by homemade guitars that seem to leak feedback, built by founding members Tim Evans and Jordan Redaelli (the aforementioned Australians). The duo met up with pacific-northwesterner Daniel Mitha in New York City, whose primitive drumming completed the group. We should also mention: the record has killer harmonies.
With the kind of understatement that’s typical of the man, Doug Paisley describes his wondrous third album Strong Feelings as “just 10 new songs. It’s a lot less simple and unadorned than other recordings I've made, but it’s just as earnest and straightforward.” Not that Paisley has forsaken any of the delicacy and quiet rapture of his previous work. Recorded in a new analog studio in Toronto, Strong Feelings bears his usual trademark signature, but it’s altogether more assured, full of rich texture and fine detail.
To make his first album in nearly 5 years, Doug Paisley stayed in his hometown of Toronto, playing with old friends and collaborators, and recording in home studios around the city. He spent the previous few years writing, and Starter Home showcases an already brilliant songwriter getting even better. The songs are rooted in the sound of folk and country, but the themes are universal and expansive, not belonging to any genre. The recording itself is quiet, often only minimally adorned, showcasing Doug Paisley's incredible voice and guitar playing.
Five new songs recorded in Toronto and intended to hold fans over until September, when Doug Paisley will release the follow-up to 2010's critically acclaimed Constant Companion. If you slept on that album, then we're sorry, but use this affodably priced EP as an excuse to acquaint yourself with one of the finest working songwriters, who Time Out NY called "the purest voice to come down the pike in ages."
“the purest voice to come down the pike in ages.” â€“ Time Out NY“Songs of poetry, harmony and sweetness and the honeyed, craggy voice of the classic American country singer... Paisley's perspective is that of the Canadian outsider, seeing America anew whilst being fully immersed in its history and myths. Like The Band he re-presents American music history without the trappings of fashion and, like the Young of After The Goldrush uses his outsider status to ruminate on America's fate" - Mojo
Two new songs from Doug Paisley. The A-side is a haunting duet with Bonnie "Prince" Billy. B-side is the more spiritual and uplifting "Everything Is Made". Limited to 700 copies.