Satellite, Jessica Long & The New Kind
506 W. Franklin St
Chapel Hill, NC, 27516
Doors 8:30 PM / Show 9:00 PM
This event is all ages
Here's the situation. In Nashville, there's an old, decrepit plantation house where three bedraggled but refined, white gentlemen drop beats, craft wordplay, design artwork, and arrange orchestral maneuvers in the dark. The structure is called Joy Mansion, and the men who dwell there staring each other down and exercising their creative rivalry for all it's worth collaborate under the moniker of Paper Route. Having toured relentlessly with the likes of Passion Pit and mewithoutyou, won hearts and minds with their debut album Absence (2009), paid musical tribute to Lou Reed to the man's imperturbable face at South by Southwest, and insinuated themselves into pop culture consciousness when their song, "The Music," appeared in the film (500) Days of Summer, Paper Route have now seen fit to go for broke on the possibility that epic earnestness, lyrical depth, and poetic heft can all coincide within one ridiculously catchy song collection primarily preoccupied with—wait for it–tragedy, disappointment, and loss. Behold The Peace of Wild Things.
"Everyone can relate to hurt," observes J.T. Daly, Paper Route's chief lyricist, singer, and artwork conjurer. For Daly and bandmate Chad Howat, The Peace of Wild Things banks on the hope that popular art can be made to arise out of horrible situations. Whereas the timing of the album's production schedule coincided with a dire cancer diagnosis within Howat's immediate family, the lyrics Daly brought to the table largely document the dissolution of his marriage. As Daly sees it, the risk of raw candor and vulnerability is the whole point, "If I'm not terrified by what I'm doing, I'd prefer to move back to Ohio and work on my art. I'm drawn to the fact that it makes me feel uncomfortable."
With songs like "Letting You Let Go" and "Glass Heart Hymn" he's determined to show his hand at every turn. Irony and cool detachment be damned.
The same goes for in-house, music-making competition and the angst Daly felt as he stood on the staircase listening to everything Howat was working on. "I'm going to have to come up with something better than that," he'd note with dread as he leaned into their collective commitment to try to out-interesting each other. In this sense, Daly and Howat are joined together in a pact of escalating catchiness, a refusal to "throw in the towel on this whole idea of instant melody." Daly explains, "I have so much respect for artists who continue to infiltrate pop culture" with "ideas executed so brilliantly that they've kind of Trojan-horsed malls across America." The trajectory he has in mind is evident with The Peace of Wild Things' lead single, "Better Life," which is carefully calibrated to colonize the public imagination in under five minutes.
Given such standards, it's no surprise that names like Kate Bush and Peter Gabriel are spoken with awe and reverence around Joy Mansion. Howat notes the way Peter Gabriel's So is comprised of one undeniably infectious track after another even as it's clearly a creative labor in which he's "trying to please himself" at every turn in "a perfect juxtaposition of pop culture and artistic endeavor." With mixing and recording responsibilities falling in Howat's lap ("The computer is my first instrument"), the work of sorting through two to three albums' worth of material and narrowing it all down to something worthy eventually became a question of serving the band's obsession with block-rocking beats: "Everyone in the band loves beats, and the beats we gravitate toward are hip-hop-esque beats." For Howat, the love affair began at 14 when a Yamaha V-50 was vouchsafed upon him ("My dad bought it for me as an 8th grade graduation present.") an artifact Paper Route won't get caught touring without. Incidentally, it's the move from studio to live performance that wouldn't be possible without the energies of drummer Gavin McDonald (Howat: "We wouldn't be a band without Gavin.") who landed with Paper Route through his work with fellow Joy Mansion occupant Canon Blue (AKA Daniel James).
While The Peace of Wild Things lyrically chronicles specific experiences of soul- crushing disillusionment and a fractured sense of faith and wonder down to the minute particulars, its creators presume—very much in the traditions of Romantic poetry and 80's New Wave (Tears for Fears, A-ha)–that creatively fixating on the local, the achingly personal even, is probably the surest path to the universal. And it is here that the concluding track, "Calm My Soul," offers a determined hopefulness well-earned by the preceding sad songs which have said so much. In this way, Paper Route shoots for a continuum with Daly's go-to writers, Wendell Berry and Douglas Coupland, whose presence as an influence is as a-typical and unexpected as the band's guiding presumption that pop songs, making them and hearing them, might occasionally render pained life more livable.
There is a lot of individual talent in SATELLITE. So much, in fact, that one might wonder why it is they would bother to 'give up' their day jobs as thriving musicians and songwriters, to navigate the slippery slope of being a new band. It's pretty clear that to make it in the music business, you not only need great songs and musicianship, but you have to have that something special, that passion, that never-back-down mojo. Collectively, SATELLITE has it all, in spades.
Playing together for the past year in Los Angeles, SATELLITE got their start with Mitch inviting his friend Steven to a songwriter showcase he was hosting. Says Steven, "When I was done, you could hear a pin drop. I didn't know what it meant, but I felt good about it." Mitch suggested they work together, they pulled in Josh, an in-demand session guitarist once signed to Columbia Records, and then hired Justin Glasco to drum, recruiting him to record the EP shortly thereafter.
It's interesting that with such unique individual success, SATELLITE is where they choose to make their home. Steven and Mitch, who are both with the same publishing company, had known each other socially for years. Each did quite well in their own right; Steven was signed to Epic early in his career, and then found his niche writing songs for such varied artists including Street Drum Corps, Melee, David Archuleta, Crosby Loggins and international superstar Celine Dion. As for Mitch, since he began writing and producing, he has been nominated for a Grammy, won an ASCAP "pop" award for the Bowling For Soup song "1985," written 4 top five singles, and was also the lead singer of the platinum selling rock band SR-71. And while he has written and produced songs for a who's who of the music industry including Pink, Faith Hill, The Jonas Brothers, Daughtry, Joe Cocker, Simple Plan and more, he is emphatic: "I have sold over 15 million records, and worked with some of the biggest artists in almost every genre of music, but SATELLITE is what I am the most proud of."
The result is the self-produced EP, RING THE BELLS, with its outstanding single "Say The Words." The anthemic show-stopper builds to an energetic crescendo that has the crowd on its feet at every show and is the benchmark for the whole of the EP. Instead of relying on volume for emotional release, the band explores texture and complex melodies, putting forth songs that express a wide range of emotions, while retaining their own untarnished clarity.
SATELLITE's distinct sound has been called a mash-up between "Kings of Leon + Snow Patrol" and, "Springsteen meets the UK." Continuing to gain momentum in Southern California, the band has quickly built a fan base through television and film placements, and media buzz surrounding their live shows. Rare is the artist who sounds as good live as on your iPod, but SATELLITE swings it. The LA Examiner named them one of the 20 Bands to Watch in 2011 and they've been championed by Radar Online, Alternative Press, Kings of A&R and several other influential blogs. Touring around the west coast and an appearance at SXSW, have kept the band busy; the second half of 2011 found them finishing up their full-length album, a continuation of sorts to the RING THE BELLS EP, that will complete the album "thematically and sonically" according to Mitch.
With music that is both bracing and soaring, matched with lyrics that are vulnerable and raw, sung by Steven with an emotion that gets you right inside every song, SATELLITE is as close to a sure bet as this crazy business has ever seen.
"There is no substitute for honesty in music. Every once in a while a song speaks to you; reminds you of how you really feel. We truly hope SATELLITE becomes a voice for the joy, heartache, beauty and truth of life."
Satellite's new album, "Calling Birds" is coming out on March 5 via Descendant/Sony Records. Their music video for their single "Say The Words" currently has over 1.5 million YouTube views.
Jessica Long & The New Kind
Jessica Long's entrancing voice and unique style create a refreshing new alternative sound that finds its roots in vintage rock and acoustic folk music. She recently finished recording her debut album in Nashville with Grammy-nominated producer Billy Smiley. The CD features a pallet of Jessica's original compositions that showcase her exceptional song-crafting skills. The album selections include sounds that range from folk rock to acoustic ballads. The album is now available on itunes as well as in physical form on the website.
Coming from a family of music lovers, Jessica remembers listening to her parent's albums and studying the charismatic features of each artist. Even as a young girl, the song-writing of Lennon and McCartney, the poetic balladry of Simon & Garfunkel and the vocal harmonies of the Beach Boys were some of the wonders that left a lasting impression on her. Jessica began composing her own songs at the age of 10, and her enthusiasm for the performing arts also led her to participation in the theatre. While studying music, theatre and film in college, Jessica's passion for song-writing was rekindled. After theatre rehearsals, she would often lock herself in one of the music rooms with guitar and piano while she worked for many hours to create her own music.
Drawing on her own experiences as well as her keen observation of others, Jessica's lyrical style opens a poetic window on the realities of human nature that will resonate with those who experience her music. Jessica's distinctive sound mingled with the foundational influences of her formative years has enabled her to produce music that will inspire all listeners.
$9.00 - $11.00
Wed, August 23
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