Tonight in Music: Gold Leaves, Groundation, R. Stevie MoorePosted by Bebe Besch
It’s been four years in the making, but Gold Leaves, the solo project of Arthur & Yu’s Grant Olsen, has finally made its debut. Gold Leaves’ first full-length, The Ornament, was released on August 16th, and is quickly gaining attention. The project started years ago, but was put on hold when Olsen’s laptop and notebooks were stolen. Olsen bounced back and delivered what we have today, a mixture of harmonious vocals and strategic arrangements – which many are comparing to other Seattle favorite Fleet Foxes. This comparison of similarities may in part stem from Olsen’s utilization of friends and label mates, The Moondoggies, on the album. In addition to this collaboration, Ben McConnell of Beach House worked on the album’s percussion. See if Gold Leaves holds up to our folk-rock scene tonight, at The Crocodile!
Groundation is a Californian roots reggae band with touches of jazz, funk, and dub that has been around for over a decade. The band all together has had up to 19 members over this period of time, with a 9 piece currently in place. Here I Am, their sixth studio album, was released in 2009, which Harrison Stafford, the band’s guitarist and primary singer, says is one of “new beginnings, like awakening from a dream into reality. It deals with the problems and challenges we face today, and also shows that we are not compromising our sound and not looking to repeat anything. Always evolving, always pushing the boundaries.” This year, Groundation released another album called The Gathering of the Elders, which features 10 tracks by the likes of Pablo Moses, Don Carlos, IJahman Levi, The Congos, and Apple Gabriel, which are a set of stories that are arranged to tell about “their struggle, the achievements of positive leaders, and the barriers in the way of becoming a better society”. The ambitious band is said to have had a devoted following and fanship internationally, with their biggest fan base located in the United States – which they haven’t been able to tour much at all because of their strenuous international tour schedule. Here is your chance to check them out, tonight at Neumos!
Let’s be honest, upon first inspection of R. Stevie Moore, I was a little concerned about what I was getting myself into. My first impression was on his website’s welcome page where you must enter the site by clicking on a black and white photo of his face with a shocking expression, which pixilation-fades into his content. Instantly, I felt like something was abnormal about the oddball imagery and lack of finesse, all details that go hand-in-hand with R. Stevie Moore’s unbelievable story – the reason I was ultimately kept intrigued. His DIY and pioneer ethics have lead him to record varying music styles since 1966, producing over 400 albums, and 2,000 songs! That must be nearing a world record of some kind! With most of his time being spent focused on recording, R. Stevie Moore hasn’t had the opportunity to perform much until now, as he has embarked on his first around-the-world tour (and his first tour any kind). Come check out this legend at The Vera Project tonight, and see which of his many songs make the set list – there’s no telling if you’ll have the chance again.