Leland Sundries EP Release

Leland Sundries

Crackling garage rock meets literate indie rock in a sound marinated in the extremes of New York City on Music For Outcasts, the full-length debut and first UK/European release for Leland Sundries. It came out in June, 2016 on L’Echiquier Records and placed Leland Sundries in the context of bands that combine literacy with overdrive such as Silver Jews, Deer Tick, Jack Oblivian, The Hold Steady, Johnny Thunders, The Modern Lovers and Ezra Furman.

Leland Sundries is the portmanteau under which frontman Nick Loss-Eaton and an ever-evolving roster of Brooklyn, NYC musicians produce the kind of careering, scrappy garage rock which has -via nascent EP releases- already earned the band nods from The New York Times and Time Out NY. Music For Outcasts itself was shaped by the aftermath from emergency open heart surgery. Fairly white-knuckle, stare-down-your-mortality fare for anyone, never mind someone barely out of their twenties, and a live-it-out experience which bears its blackly humorous mark across Music For Outcasts.

Studio recordings were then made in an unheated loft studio in Nick’s old neighbourhood of Greenpoint, in a former creamery building nestled next to a bridge between Brooklyn and Queens, much of it recorded on analogue tape.

The surf-rock wash of ‘Greyhound From Reno’ zeros in on the pill-hazed, midnight exodus of a shady character skipping town. Whilst the track lampoons its sleazy, washed up protagonist, Loss-Eaton delivers its underlying inference direct to the mirror, written as it was at the tail end of his addiction; ‘It’s impressionistic, non-linear, but that sense you can’t outrun yourself is palpable’. The track came eventually came together in aptly chaotic fashion during late-night recording takes; ‘We turned out all the lights in the studio and it got weird. I sang and screamed until I went hoarse, and it felt like an exorcism of panic.’

Elsewhere on Music For Outcasts, Loss-Eaton turns the microscope on his own scars with a similarly unflinching candour. ‘Freckle Blues’ (written whilst New York was holed up during Hurricane Irene) equates the elapse of time since a relationship’s demise and the guilty aftermath. And yet beyond the more personal scorched earth the record rakes over, there is a wider resonance within the world of misfits and missed connections that Music For Outcasts inhabits. Fittingly for one who snatches fragments of lyric ideas from overheard conversations & glimpses into the lives of others, the characters and vignettes which Loss-Eaton summons here are so vivid as to become almost tangible. ‘Stripper From Bensonhurst’ mines far beyond the attendant stereotypes to chart the push/pull between a grim domestic semblance of normality far more intolerable to this woman than her nocturnal ‘other life', whilst the taut, Spoon-esque snap and swivel of ‘Radiator Sabotage’ paints a world of burnt-out glamour as palpable as any of Lou Reed’s succinct dispatches. Even the track titles themselves – ‘Studebaker’, 'Wallace ID’ – function almost like projector slides, brief flashes of narrative which demand conjecture.

Two studio EPs, a vinyl/digital 7” single, three music videos, and national US touring have already earned Leland Sundries praise from Pop Matters, New Yorker, Magnet, American Songwriter, Village Voice, Time Out NY, Baeble Music, No Depression, Blurt, and Boston Phoenix. The band has performed at Campout Fest (Joshua Tree, CA); taped a Daytrotter session; and shared stages with Spirit Family Reunion, Todd Snider, Marah, Eef Barzelay (leader of Clem Snide), Taylor Hollingsworth (of Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band) and Cracker.

NO ICE started as a recording project of singer/guitarist Jamie Frey and drummer Jesse Katz, who were playing in native NYC rock n’ roll band The Brooklyn What. Working with visionary producer Oliver Ignatius, who runs Mama Coco's Funky Kitchen, a Brooklyn recording studio/Utopian arts collective, the two began recording the set of songs that would become their debut full length LP Come On Feel The NO ICE. The title of the album is a tribute to the 1993 album Come On Feel The Lemonheads by The Lemonheads, which is a profound influence on the band, as well as artists like The Replacements, Guided By Voices, Big Star and Elvis Costello. The sound on the record veers from genre to genreincluding indie guitar rock, power-pop, shoegaze, punk and girl group but maintains a focus on songwriting, harmony and occasionally confessional lyricism.

Since the beginning of the record project, the band has been fleshed out into a six piece ensemble including: Brooklyn What lead and slide guitarist John-Severin Napolillo, vocalist Gwynn Galitzer, who is also the editor-in-chief for feminist zine Suffragette City, Jesse's brother, bassist Jacob Katz and keyboardist Sean Spada, who has played with The Bottom Dollars, Le Rug, The Nuclears, Butter The Children, Deathrow Tull and more.. The ensemble has played both CMJ and the Northside festival. The non-album single "Eat This Heart (Summer Version),” came out , with a music video inspired by Jean Luc Godard’s French new wave film Breathless (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDne3_r8EC4.)

The track was also featured on a compilation from Sneaky Bear Records and the CMJ mixtape from Little Dickman records. The non-album single “Castle Braid” was released on a compilation from Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen with an accompanying music video starring members of local bands Prima, Bodega Bay, Junk Boys, Yin Yangs, MPHO, Pill, Stove, Butter The Children and Video Beast. directed and written by Frey himself (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NvkmhAU6qnE), as well as a digital single backed with a cover of David Bowie’s “Boys Keep Swinging.”

The full length debut Come On Feel The NO ICE was released on May 6, 2016 with an exclusive premier on the blog Speak Into My Good Eye and a release show at Shea Stadium with Lee Bains III and The Glory Fires, with whom they had just completed a short tour.

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