Saturday, June 7, 2014

American Fiction - Dumb Luck

Eddie Kramer does it again.

What?  You don't know Eddie Kramer?  You probably do and just don't know that you do.  Eddie Kramer is the legendary rock producer behind every Led Zeppelin release from Led Zeppelin II through Houses Of The Holy and the engineer for the Beatles' All You Need Is Love."  He recently produced the posthumous Jimi Hendrix album People, Hell And Angels.  He's not the kind of guy that has to take risks.  With his resume he can pick and choose what he wants to do and with whom he wants to work..  He chose to produce the debut album, Dumb Luck, of an obscure band, American Fiction.

According to the band's Landon Moore (vox/guitar), Chris Johnson (lead vocals/guitar) somehow found Eddie Kramer's email address and contact information, sent Kramer a song and asked for him to take a chance on the band,  Johnson concluded the email "If you write back, I'll shit my pants." Kramer did write back, “Get some diapers. I loved the song. Let’s talk.”

Kramer ultimately took the band under his wing and, for three days, twelve hours a day, rehearsed the songs for the album in a Nashville warehouse.  Originally envisioned as an EP,  ultimately, the aptly named debut album, Dumb Luck, took shape.  It was recorded in Nashville and then mixed in Los Angeles.  It is available as of June 3, 2014.

The music is rooted in country, rock and blues, although there is clearly a pop element.  The tracks are multilayered masterpieces of subtle sound engineering.  The songs and treatments are reminiscent of some of greatest classic and alternative rock bands without being pale copies.  Think the Beatles, Little River Band, The Black Crowes, The Wallflowers, even a bit of Zeppelin. It is simple, yet intricate in its arrangement, and rich in texture. 

While the involvement of Eddie Kramer in the project may have been "dumb luck," the resulting release is far from fortuitous.  It is a deliberate tour de force.  The album is as much about the genius of Eddie Kramer as it is about the debut of American Fiction, which can only mean one thing - this band and release are worth checking out. 

- Old School


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