“…a first-rate songwriter and band leader.” — Greg Kot, Chicago Tribune
“Jason Narducy is the reason Foo Fighters exists (just ask Dave Grohl). He’s also in possession of rock’s sexiest elbows (just ask Ian Rubbish).” — NPR Music
“‘Metal Frames’ [. . .] is full of compact, bristling and melodic rock songs indebted to snarling punk, noise-laced pop, muscular classic rock and Cheap Trick.” — Salon
“With ‘Metal Frames,’ Narducy not only avoids the sophomore slump, he enters MVP territory.” — Magnet
“…a powerhouse pop record that prides itself on tenacious vocals and resolute rhythm guitar.” — Stereogum
“You won’t see more indie rock cred than on the CV of Jason Narducy.” — KEXP, “Song of the Day”
I suppose the “smart” thing to do would be to start off with all the usual crap folks tend to talk about when Jason Narducy, the “brains” behind the rock collective Split Single, comes up in casual conversation, like how he plays bass with Bob Mould and those fuckers in Superchunk, used to play bass with Bob Pollard and whomever else, had a band called Verbow, inspired Dave Grohl to devote his life to music back when neither of them were even old enough to go on all the rides, and whatever the hell else you wanna throw in there. But do you want the “facts” or do you want the truth?
Narducy’s band Split Single has a new album out. It’s their second, it’s called Metal Frames, and, kind of like the night I just told you about, it’s goddamn exhilarating and scary and I didn’t want it to end. Narducy sings and strangles the guitar on it, Jon Wurster (Bob Mould, Superchunk, Mountain Goats, and 78 other bands) beats the crap out of the drums on it, John Stirratt (Wilco, duh) thumps the damn bass on it, and Nora O’Connor sings her ass off all over the thing.
— Dave Hill, 2016
When acclaimed poet and former Tim Buckley collaborator Larry Beckett first offered Chris Slusarenko and John Moen of Eyelids to write new lyrics for their next record as well as giving them access to his words from the last four decades, the musicians weren’t sure Eyelids soaring brand of guitar driven rock would jibe with someone else’s lyrics (including a song that was written with Buckley). “It was Larry’s trust in us that really caused us to think we should do it,” Moen says. “When someone like that is into your work to the degree they want to collaborate, it definitely feeds your confidence.”
On The Accidental Falls Portland, Oregon’s Eyelids, one of rock’s best-kept secrets, step firmly out from the considerable shadow cast by the band members’ second-to-none pedigrees earned from time spent in Guided By Voices, The Decemberists, Stephen Malkmus and Elliott Smith’s bands. Produced by REM iconoclast Peter Buck who also plays on the record with Tucker Martine (Decemberists, My Morning Jacket, Neko Case) and Heba Kadry (Deerhunter, Bjork) who mixed and mastered the record respectively.
The Accidental Falls features a bountiful cacophony of gorgeously shimmering riffs and songs so delectably crafted that all who value the electric guitar (three to be exact) as a source of pure joy. Created with long time members, Jonathan Drews (guitar), Jim Taltstra (bass) and Paulie Pulvirenti (drums), Eyelids’ fourth album finds the outfit as both stewards of a classic sound (Alex Chiltonites and disciples of early REM or later XTC will fall hard for this project) and accomplished artists propelling their craft to thrilling new heights. Their first record was released in the UK by Tim Burgess and the band toured the UK previously with their friends, Drive-By Truckers.
Slusarenko’s relationship with Buck goes back to 1983 when REM fanboy Chris wrote Peter a gushing letter that Buck answered, leading to a meeting in ‘84, displaying how full circle things have come for the songwriter and guitarist. The magic of being fated to find one of your heroes producing your record a half a century later isn’t lost on Slusarenko. “Peter has always been amazing for us. Having your hero become a friend and collaborator is such a dream and does so much for the band,” the guitarist says. “Even though we’ve been working together for years now, sometimes you look up in the studio and think ‘Holy shit, we’ve got Peter Buck working on our record.’”
As they typically write the music first and add lyrics later, Beckett’s compositions allowed Eyelids to wholly focus on the music and the result is stunning. Already the band’s trademark, the delectably shimmering guitar playing on The Accidental Falls is utterly spellbinding and deeply imbued with joyous emotion—rock n’ roll as catharsis.
The Accidental Falls sees the band expound upon that sound and push it to new heights. The paisley psychedelia of “Dream” and “River” provide a perfect sonic palette cleanser to the cacophonous crashing of drums and guitars the peaks of songs like “Ceremony” and the Elliott Smith-indebted “Monterey” provide. The Accidental Falls casts a hypnotic spell over the listener and triumphantly reminds us, hearts fully on sleeves, why we fell in love with rock n’ roll in the first place
Prolific Wisconsin songwriter and new Madison resident Graham Hunt (Midnight Reruns, Sundial Mottos, Midwives, soda road) has a knack for picking out life’s small moments and connecting them to the big stuff, doing so with sympathy and spirit. Catchy and clever these tunes are sunny, introspective and supported by the powerful backing band Claynkee (Sam Reitman and Tyler Chicorel).