Earnest and melodic indie rock from buzzworthy Dublin quintet
Little Green Cars
830 E. Burnside St.
Portland, OR, 97214
Doors 8:00 PM / Show 9:00 PM
This event is 21 and over
Little Green Cars
Little Green Cars were still in their teens when they were spotted and signed to Glassnote and recorded their widely-acclaimed 2013 debut Absolute Zero with producer Markus Dravs. That album changed their lives, taking the five former school friends on tour everywhere from Europe and Australia to Russia and the States, which they criss-crossed six times in three years.
Now all in their early 20s, Little Green Cars are both a different band and the same five friends who met every Sunday aged 15 in singer Stevie Appleby’s garden shed to start writing songs. Those changes, their shared experiences and individual ups and downs are candidly documented in Ephemera, a gorgeous, grown-up album about, well, growing up.
Two deaths, relationship break-ups and their over two years’ worth of touring are among the key events that inform Ephemera’s richly-textured, harmony-soaked rock songs. While the impact of those events will change over time, the intense emotions they evoked live on in the music.
All the time the band were on tour, they were writing new songs, some of which they honed live. All the time they were changing, as were family and friends back home, whose lives they could sometimes no longer relate to. Stevie and Faye O’Rourke – the band’s principal songwriters and interchanging lead vocalists – watched their love lives fall apart. All five questioned who they used to be and who they had become, not least guitarist Adam O’Regan, whose father passed away.
“It’s a transitional album,” says Stevie. “Lyrically, it’s all about change – the end of some eras, new beginnings, learning from the past and looking to the future. Ephemera means things that are important to you, but only for a short time. That could apply to music or relationships or even a particular day.
All five members of the band – completed by Donagh Seaver O’Leary on bass and Dylan Lynch on drums - contribute to the music and harmonise. Having written on the road, the quintet returned to Dublin in 2014 to make demos. By the end of the year, they were ready to record their first batch of songs. Keen to co-produce, they sought a trusted collaborator. Enter Rob Kirwan, at whose treasure trove Dublin studio the band experimented with sounds, adding electronics, mastering reverb, bringing in a cellist and learning to play the toy-like Omnichord.
A dozen exquisitely-crafted, exceptionally-sung, sumptuously-produced songs shimmer with the myriad of emotions the band has been through - restlessness, regret, love, heartbreak, hope and acceptance among them.
For Seattle-based Kris Orlowski and his band, making music is about more than fulfilling personal agendas; it’s about creating something that touches the soul. Through relatable storytelling, husky harmonies and Orlowski’s knack for creating emotional highs, the band has done just that: touched the souls of people across the Pacific Northwest – as well as across the country, since 2010. Now, in the wake of releasing three well-received EPs, touring the country and having songs featured on hit television series including “Grey’s Anatomy” and “The Tomorrow People,” the act has just released its first full-length album, Believer.
“The songs we’re writing now are evolving the same way our band is,” says Orlowski. “It’s not just one voice – but five voices. And yeah, it’s my vision, and I’m leading the charge. But in these songs, there is more than just one thing we’re trying to say.”
Having recently collaborated with a 17-piece orchestra for the Pieces We Are EP, Orlowski wanted to go in a new direction with the new material. That’s why, along with band mates Mark Isakson (guitar), Torry Anderson (keys/vocals), Greg Garcia (drums) Tyler Carroll (bass) and Jonathan Warman (bass), Orlowski sought out producer Martin Feveyear of Jupiter Studios in Seattle. Feveyear, who has worked with acts including Presidents of the United States of America, Queens Of The Stone Age, The Lumineers, and Death Cab for Cutie, gave new focus to the project.
“There are times when you’re too close to the songs, and having a producer like Feveyear there – who knew where we were going with this record – he was able to kind of get us there,” Orlowski says.
In the spirit of getting there, the songs that make-up Believer were woven together along the West Coast: from the salty shores of Seaside, Ore., and Orcas Island’s Doe Bay, to the corners of Orlowski’s Seattle apartment – and the practice spaces in between.
The result is more punch-y and experimental; a cinematic compilation, which echoes the band’s earlier folk-infused traditions while shedding the lush sounds of a full orchestra for more traditional rock and pop arrangements. Calling on personal experiences and thoughtful reflection, and inspired by the work of authors like Flannery O’Connor and Paulo Coehlo, Believer may be the band’s most honest, empowering and upbeat collection yet.
“I think the album will inspire some hope, but I also think it will go beyond that and give people a reason to act,” Orlowski says.
In other words, it might encourage finding something to believe in.
BIO EXCERPT (209):
For Seattle-based Kris Orlowski and his band, making music is about more than fulfilling personal agendas; it’s about creating something that touches the soul. Through relatable storytelling, husky harmonies and knack for hitting emotional highs, the band has touched the souls of people across the Pacific Northwest since 2010. In the wake of releasing three well-received EPs, touring the country and having songs featured on primetime television series, the act has just released its first full-length album, Believer. Produced by Martin Feveyear, of Jupiter Studios in Seattle, the songs that make-up Believer were woven together along the West Coast: from the salty shores of Seaside, Ore., and Orcas Island’s Doe Bay, to the corners of Orlowski’s Seattle apartment – as well as the practice spaces in between. And the collection, rich with personal experiences and thoughtful reflection, may prove the band’s most honest and empowering work yet. Shedding the lush sounds of a 17 piece orchestra for more traditional rock and pop arrangements, the cinematic record is more punch-y and experimental than their earlier folk-infused traditions. “I think the album will inspire some hope, but I also think it will go beyond that and give people a reason to act,” Orlowski says. In other words, it might encourage finding something to believe in.