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Sea Wolf

SomaFM presents

Sea Wolf

Hey Marseilles, The Donnies The Amys

Mon, November 5, 2012

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

$15.00

Tickets Available at the Door

This event is 21 and over

Sea Wolf
Sea Wolf



On September 11 Sea Wolf will release it’s third album, Old World Romance on Dangerbird Records. Old World Romance is the highly anticipated follow up to Sea Wolf’s successful sophomore LP, White Water, White Bloom.

Sea Wolf’s founder and leading man, Alex Brown Church (writer/guitar/vocals), shares “After the last record, which was written and recorded far from home and was more of a group experience, I really wanted to stay close to home, be in my own space and give myself room to explore and write and record on my own schedule,” Church continues, “I just felt I needed to bring Sea Wolf back to me, to my world,” Church produced and recorded Old World Romance in the comfort of his home studio, with mixing by Kennie Takahashi (Broken Bells, The Black Keys, Jessica Lea Mayfield).

While the gorgeous full-band arrangements coupled with often dark, yet buoyant lyrics are sometimes reminiscent of White Water, White Bloom, Church delves into new territory with Old World Romance. The songs are stripped back and lean, simply melodic and brightly propulsive, leaning away from White Water’s indie-folk epics. Left unchanged is Church’s propensity to draw inspiration from his personal situations. One particular theme that pervades throughout the collection of songs on Old World Romance is Church’s return to California. He explains, “This record is about a lot of things, but some of it is about coming home after being away and facing the realities of one’s life, and life in general. Things you may have run away from, and things you are ready to embrace. Reconnecting and growing up.”

Leading single “Old Friend” is a bittersweet heart tugger centered around a minimalist drum beat and calculated acoustic plucking that highlights Church’s vocals, and perfectly pulls at the albums’ theme of confronting reality as well as the past. More upbeat tunes such as “In Nothing” will make for the perfect soundtrack to your 2012 summer nights, with its meandering strings and bright snare beat. Slow burner “Blue Stockings” on the other hand, is a gentler, softer flashback to the days of Get to the River Before It Runs Too Low EP, Sea Wolf’s 2007 debut release on Dangerbird Records.

Joining Church on Old World Romance is Lisa Fendelander (keyboards), Joey Ficken (Drums), Ted Liscinski (Bass) and multi-instrumentalist Zac Rae.
Hey Marseilles
Hey Marseilles
As a musical breeding ground, Seattle is mistrustful of eager strivers. Still suffering from a grunge hangover, the city would rather embrace its underachievers than hitch its wagon to the obviously ambitious. So for the past eight years, Hey Marseilles has played by the rules, earned their indie cred the usual way: by touring relentlessly across the US and releasing a pair of albums beloved by fans around the world. But even as they succeeded at their modest goals, the members of Hey Marseilles—singer Matt Bishop, guitarist Nick Ward, keyboardist Philip Kobernik, violist Sam Anderson, violinist Jacob Anderson—felt restless.

With their third album, Hey Marseilles shakes off the past and takes a big, bold step. In all its panoramic grandeur, Hey Marseilles leans into a new, bright future. In its polished production, its narrative arc, its departure from the band's previous MO, the album is a leap forward. And it finds the humble quintet ready for the risk.

Two years ago, Hey Marseilles met Anthony Kilhoffer, an A-list, LA-based producer and engineer who's won Grammys for his work with Kanye West and John Legend. Kilhoffer typically trafficks in the realm of Top-40 pop and hip-hop, among platinum-status megastars like Jay Z and R. Kelly and Rick Ross. After they were introduced by mutual friends, Kilhoffer saw something in Hey Marseilles that he couldn't resist: the radical adventure of veering down an uncharted road. He jumped at the chance to work with the band. For their part, Hey Marseilles recognized an unprecedented opportunity to push their usual creative in new directions. Up for the challenge, they went all-in.

In early 2014, the group made a couple trips to LA, prewriting with Kilhoffer and a small cadre of songwriters, absorbing their almost scientific advice on how to hone the more accessible, "pop" elements of their sound. Later that year, Kilhoffer spent a couple weeks in Seattle, taking the helm at the mixing board at Avast and London Bridge Studios while the band completed recording. They found that the 41-year-old producer was—how to put this delicately?—eccentric in his approach. (Ask them about it; they have a zillion stories.) In his focus on immediacy and accessibility, they also believed Kilhoffer was right. His MO, as paraphrased by the band: Find the song's catchiest part. Get there faster. Do it more.

What you hear on Hey Marseilles is a band has the guts to change course deep into their career, backed by the self-awareness to understand the exact place they were meant to go. It's self-titled because, at three albums in, the band announcing itself the world as if for the first time. All of the members have individual songwriting credits here—a first. The entire album, music and lyrics, is about adventurousness, finding faith in a new path.

The spirit is there from the start: Album opener "Eyes On You" contains the most explosive climax in Hey Marseilles history, and at under three minutes long, it's the shortest song they've ever recorded. Credit Kilhoffer's skills as producer and head coach: This is the kind of thrilling hit song he's known for. "West Coast" follows, inspired by endless hours on the road and the new beginnings found there, "the moment everything had changed" as Bishop sings, his tenor buoyed by Kobernik's elegant piano. "My Heart" percolates with electro-pop enthusiasm, ready to take a spot next to Kilhoffer's other Top-40 anthems. Reggie Watts, former Seattleite and current music director on Late Night with James Corden, lends uplifting vocals to the yearning, catchy "Perfect OK." On "Trouble," Bishop croons one of the album's most memorable lyrics, penned by Sam Anderson: "What good is love or trust/If you never get in trouble?" Thematically, "Crooked Lines" picks up where the band's previous album, Lines We Trace, left off. It's the album's only moment of hindsight, countered a few songs later with the band's simmering, scintillating cover of David Bowie's "Heroes." The album closes with "Horizon," its most introspective number.

"I'm out on the horizon/with the darkness below," Bishop sings, Anderson's cello and Kobernik's keys resonating like a dirge. "I'm out on the horizon/But it seems like I'm close."

Closer than close. Hey Marseilles has arrived.
The Donnies The Amys
The Donnies The Amys

The Donnies The Amys are an indie pop band from Echo Park, California. They've been in lots of other bands, but one day they quit those bands and started one together. In January 2012 they released thier self-titled debut album, which they recorded between frisbee golf games in LA in the summer of 2011. Their music has been featured on Grey's Anatomy, KCRW, and Daytrotter. They are currently writing a new album, and composing the score for a film, "King of Norway." Amy is also drumming with Fiona Apple on her world tour this year.

"The glorious confluence of singer-songwriter Donnie Stemp’s emotive paeans and drummer Amy Wood’s artful rhythms. The pair have already capitalized on their collaboration; their debut album (which you should have by now) is a collection of agile indie-pop that leaves you hankering for Stemp’s next couplet."
-KEVIN BRONSON, Buzzbands.LA

The Donnies The Amys "travel across a lot of different terrain with their music, with the duo sounding like a much more nuanced Jack and Meg, like the boozy love notes of the poets to the damned/themselves, like the crumbling of brittle dreams, like strange, new-age folk."
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