We have been kicking about the idea of compiling our favorite artists onto one disc and plying them out free; but combining a killer, yet cohesive physical album, of varied artists takes more than kicking. So, we took our time on this one, and are extremely pleased with what we’ll be releasing on April 14th @ Lola’s Saloon (Fort Worth).
In an earlier post we showed you the visual “family tree” style attitude taken for choosing the acts, and in a fit of clarity we want to give you a deeper dive to introduce you to each artist. Every band, or solo project, was chosen out of extensions from our Hand Drawn family, so we’ll start at the top and keep it simple.
Secret Ghost Champion:
One of our all-time favorite Fort Worth acts, as should be evident with 2011’s HDR release of “Psychosomatic Immortality”; melds country, rock, and psychedelia so seamlessly, that the line between art and music is wholly indistinguishable. “He’s Got Mine” keeps the us on the hook with exuberant blasts of colorful guitar and reflexive synth.
Produced by SGC front-man Ben Hance, this experimental three piece act comprised of two brothers Jeevan and Matthew Antony boast their collective love for retro-fitted indie pop on an outstanding track simply titled, “High”.
Another Hance tied outfit we’ve been tabbing for a while is psyche-country band Igneous Grimm led by Ryan Elmore. Their track “The Problem with Sand” is so undeniably catchy and potent that we are going to apologize now for getting it stuck in your head.
Between Fort Worth and Dallas are 12 year rock veterans Exit 380 who have turned over a new hand-sewn leaf with their late-2011 release Townies. “A Song About Us”, produced by Salim Nourallah and penned by guitarist Aaron Borden, resumes the band’s claim to place the word “roots” before “rock”.
Boomin’ Gen Mills:
An actual family made its way into our tree with this band of guitarist brothers, Monte and Ryan Allred, and drummer father, Monte Allred Sr. Tracked at Borden’s home studio, “At Your Feet” rowdily preens by throwing the roadhouse into this raucous kiss off.
Loretti front-woman Aimie Lovett busted out of the Golden Triangle to land safely on the shores of Los Angeles, but not before she cut an album with Borden back in 2009. The band’s strikingly haunted selection “Ursa” received a gorgeous treatment from LA producer Scott Warren, and we’re tremendously pleased to have it on the record.
David Neff has one of the best, if not the best voice in the metroplex. Holding the reigns for over a decade in Denton-based rock powerhouse Dollybraid, and current stalwart Little Big Horn; Abby NormL serves as Neff’s acoustic solo project. His achingly sharp contribution “Just Because” obliges as a perfect close to the album.
Speaking of solo projects, Exit 380 front Dustin Blocker gives us another glimpse at his approach to electro-gaze nearly a year-to-date of his HDR debut LP “Poisoning the Medicine Tree”. His chill-out track “Servant No. 1” creeps in with undulating instrumentation and poignant lyrics, both real and imaginary.
A band? A solo project? Inside Light has been both, and continues to be a labor of will for principle songwriter and performer Kelly Panter. With half of a decade under the moniker, this compilation proceeds even the debut release of the project, and we are entranced by the detached spoken-word track “Voiceless”.
A new pop-rock act, which will make its debut live performance at the compilation release show, aligns Panter and bassist Evan Scates with multi-instrumental songwriter Henry Coke to release their single “Turning the Pages” before a full length debut later this year. The muscular beats swath a mod rock edge onto a smooth sailing retro-surf guitar.
The Uproot Project:
Written and recorded 6 years ago by Kelly Panter, the Inside Light guitarist enlisted Blocker on vocals to actualize his solo contribution The Uproot Project with “Dear Amanda”. Under bandages for so long, this was a track we had to free from the laptop and place out into the wild.