Carl Broemel of My Morning Jacket, with special guest Steelism
515-B North McDonough St.
Decatur, GA, 30030
Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM
“I didn’t have to do this,” says Carl Broemel, referring to his new solo album, 4th of July, which will be released August 19 on Stocks in Asia/Thirty Tigers. As a member of My Morning Jacket,
Broemel spent the past few years working rock ’n’ roll hours (that is to say, 24/7) with his bandmates to help establish MMJ as one of the best live rock bands currently in the game.
Their combined efforts proved successful.
But something stirred within him and during lulls between album and tour cycles, when he could’ve opted to vacation or catch up on sleep, Broemel instead booked studio sessions in
Nashville and, over a four year span of these tiny windows, recorded the sprawling collection of songs that form 4th of July.
From this time blossomed not only a record, but Carl’s own label, Stocks in Asia. Though much was forged by Broemel alone, he also reached out to those close to him: Bo Koster and Tom
Blankenship of My Morning Jacket both appear on the record, with Koster co-writing a few tracks. There are guest appearances by Neko Case, Laura Veirs, Russ Pollard, Shelly Colvin,
Richard Medek and Jordan Caress with Teddy Morgan on board as co-producer.
Recorded over different periods of Broemel’s life, the songs point to a soulful awareness of inner life and the passage of time – thoughts that ponder their own reflection, marveling perhaps at how different our lives look now from the engrained images of ourselves that we’ve held onto from an earlier time.
Woven together during moments of downtime certainly informed the decidedly laid-back grooves of 4th of July; but Broemel also attributes it to the fact that “at heart, I’m just a chilled-out person. And I’m 42 now and I have a child; the things I think about aren’t necessarily breakup songs. It’s more about pondering all those things that people normally do at this age.”
Asked if that meant this album could be called “dad rock”, there’s a pause, then Broemel laughs and says good-naturedly, “I think it’s more like ‘parent rock.’ Let’s not be so sexist, please.”
Truth be told, the parents who will listen to 4th of July are probably already the coolest parents on the block. The ones you wish would adopt you or at least invite you over for dinner, while dropping the needle on “Sleepy Lagoon,” and singing along right through the closing “Best Of” — a song that questions anybody who thinks that all the best things have already been made, long ago in a previous generation.
4th of July proves that’s just not the case.
It's a short drive from Nashville, TN, to Muscle Shoals, AL: 125 miles, or about two hours if your foot's on the leaden side, and you've left one musical Mecca for another. Thanks to Nashville instrumental duo Steelism, though, that gap is bridged in the time it takes to listen to a track. Comprised of guitarist Jeremy Fetzer, pedal steel player Spencer Cullum and backed by some of Nashville's finest young musicians, Steelism blends an eclectic array of vintage and modern influences to create instrumental music that truly sounds like nothing else.
Though Steelism is new to the music scene, Cullum and Fetzer are not, having backed artists like Wanda Jackson, Johnny Fritz, Rayland Baxter and Andrew Combs. The two met while touring the U.K. with Nashville songstress Caitlin Rose, quickly bonding over their shared love for classic movie soundtrack composers like Ennio Morricone and '60s instrumental acts like Booker T. and the M.G.s, The Ventures and Pete Drake. Writing together between sound checks, the duo realized it was time for the sidemen to become frontmen, and Steelism was born.
"Steelism allows us to musically explore in our writing and take performance chances we couldn't get away with in any other project," Fetzer says.
Though the two grew up on different continents (Cullum hails from Essex, England; Fetzer from Canton, OH), Cullum and Fetzer were cut from the same musical cloth, as becomes immediately evident whenever they take the stage. Their debut EP The Intoxicating Sounds of Pedal Steel and Guitar was met with critical acclaim, with American Songwriter's Sean Maloney calling Steelism "instantly recognizable – surf, country, blues, all steeped in soul and heavy on the grooves – but astoundingly outside the contemporary vernacular."
"We've always been into the idea of playing a strong melody—something you can hum—rather than soloing," Cullum explains.
The duo's full-length debut 615 to FAME was released in the US via Single Lock Records (founded by Ben Tanner of the Alabama Shakes, John Paul White of The Civil Wars and Will Trapp) and will be released in the UK by Names Records on February 9th, 2015. Half recorded at Muscle Shoals' historic FAME Studios, where Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin and Otis Redding all tracked hits, 615 to FAME was produced by Fetzer and Cullum with co-production from Ben Tanner, and contributions from longtime Nashville-based collaborators Jon Radford (drums) and Michael Rinne (bass). Featuring 10 original instrumentals and one cover, 615 to FAME announces Steelism as one of Nashville's most exciting new acts.
Steelism's compositions don't need lyrics to tell stories. "Marfa Lights" is a krautrock-inspired instrumental influenced by German bands like Neu! and Can, with its title taken from the paranormal lights of the Marfa, TX sky. "Cat's Eye Ring" is fit for a Spaghetti Western, named for a ring belonging to a mother protecting her children during the Battle of the Alamo. The album's only cover track is the swirling, psychedelic Pete Drake number "The Spook," which showcases Cullum's faithful but updated homage to the late Nashville pedal steel legend and Fetzer's heavier take on the track's opening refrain.
As Ben Tanner explains, "Great instrumental rock and roll, sadly, has become a lost art, but Steelism is resurrecting that tradition and adding new chapters of its own, and while they may not have a singer, they certainly have great things to say."
For more information visit www.steelismmusic.com.
$15.00 - $20.00
Thu, December 14
Fri, December 15
Fri, December 15
Fri, December 15
Sat, December 16