The release of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.'s Horse Power EP last year skyrocketed the group to the top of our must watch list. Neither words nor images from this band reflect the dreamy well produced sound of the first four tracks recorded in their Detroit basement. The history of powerful classic rock and deep seedy techno associated with the Motor City are as far away from the bands cheery sound as the NASCAR crowd associated with their name and birth city will be from their shows. The juxtaposition is not a source for ironic hipster humor in the music, the laughter begins with the bands name and NASCAR outfits on stage, and ends as the beauty behind the vocal harmonies, melodic hooks, and subtle electronic fills in songs such as "God Only Knows" and "Vocal Chords" take an audience member out of the sticky floored tavern they paid to get into, and into their own secret garden in paradise; holding hands, thinking pleasant thoughts, and enjoying the all the pretty colors. The release of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.'s first full length "It's a Corporate World" brings the band touring to our own local seedy tavern here in Seattle - Tractor to be specific - where the Disconnect will be there to watch the live show live up to expectations just as well as first listens to "It's a Corporate World" complemented and expanded the great sounds brought to us by the Horse Power EP.
Opening for Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. will be California transplant from South Dakota EMA (Erika M. Anderson). Her bio lists her as a direct descendent of Erik Blood-Axe the ruthless viking warrior, but first listens to her just-released debut album "Past Life Martyed Saints" suggest a sound much more fitting to the breezy mountaintops of the Appalachians than to the rough waves crashing against a pillaging viking ship that her heritage suggests. Here is a snip of what EMA has to say about her single "Grey Ship":
"I’ve wanted to make a piece that changes fidelity in the middle of the song, from lo-fi to hi-fi. I imagined it being like when Dorothy opens the door to Oz and the whole world turns from black and white to technicolor."
In "Grey Ship" EMA plays with the expectations the history of music production has given us, and I like it. There is something in her that has emerged in recent music, the synthesis of purity, and destruction, of beauty and grunge. Think Sleigh Bells turned down from to 7 and played on an A-Track in your 1969 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser. I dropped in "Grey Ship" and "Vocal Chords" below the post to get you ready, see you at the show.