On their fifth studio release, The Exciting Sounds of Savo present thirteen compelling songs that take the listener through a deeply satisfying landscape of highs and lows intertwined with multiple genres and moods. With many songs crafted in the late nights during the Fall ‘07 residency of KofD at Savo Studios, the disc is well balanced between brimming with the energy from moment and lush orchestral backdrops.
The release kicks off with some minor note, aggressive energy break beats about minor note SF supervisor Ed Jew on “Flower Man”. It then continues the theme of local San Francisco topics on “O’s Golden Bay” with O taking the lead on a jazzy, piano lounge lament about the Cosco-Busan-meets-the-Bay-Bridge disaster.
The bulk of the mid section of the disc was recorded in the late Fall of ‘07 during KofD’s extended stay at Savo Studios. KofD’s stay in the studio was kicked off with some drinking at the Riptide on a slow Tuesday evening and culminates in “Lowtide at the Riptide”, a song echoing the bleakness and hopelessness of a lonely drink in a fog laden bar on the last block of the North American continent before it falls into the Pacific Ocean. The tempo picks up on “Elizabeth and Her Bear”, a playful diddy led by Marj on lead vocals that highlights one girl’s look for love in San Francisco. The look for love continues right into the next tune, the downtempo and lushly orchestrated “I Need Your Love”. KofD exercises her sultry pipes in the very late hours of a mid-November Saturday night amidst a swirling sitar and string section.
This same Saturday night session provides the basis for the next four songs as well. The evening started innocently enough with a gaggle of Consortium Members meeting for drinks at Amelie on Polk St. But the pours were large and some Members didn’t fair too well. “Green Smoothy Nightmare” chronicles that event against a gorgeously haunting and lamentful backdrop … certainly one of the most beautiful songs ever written by the Consortium. From there, you get a swift kick in your teeth with the rocker “Shelby Twsp vs. Madison Heights” where the virtues of said Detroit suburbs are belted out in compelling debate between C and KofD.
“Sunday and Your Hangover” switches modes once again and washes the listener with mellow waves of ‘60’s British psychedelica. Jangly guitars, tambourine, piano and the harpsichord set the stage while the ramifications of this evening’s wine drinking are postulated. The result is a subtle song which reveals itself over many listens to be one of the high marks of the Consortium recordings. Just as the listener is lulled into a restful haze, “40 in Detroit” comes out and smacks them upside the head with guitars blazing to put an exclamation point on the end of the festivities on this very late and productive evening.
The last recording of the KofD Sessions, “Freewill” gets penned during a car ride up 280 to Savo Studios on the next Friday evening. This song is by far the most ambitious of all of the Consortium tunes consisting of well over 20 individual tracks. It’s a wild, ruckus shit kicker that rocks out with a head nodding know. Following this, “Ralph’s Conspiracy Theory” leads the adventurous listener on a little trek into the world of Consortium member Ralph’s theories. The song poses question after question while a simple little underlying rhythm slowly builds tension in swell after swell. A number of new Consortium members team up in the studio, ensconced in a wealth of percussion instruments and unleash a fury that by the two minute mark of this song is full brim with kinetic energy and conspiracies.
The next song, “Midnight Mass” is penned on Xmas eve and features an energetic, soggy blues discourse on why the Consortium is drinking whiskey rather than attending said event on xmas eve. You see, Consortium member O mentioned that he would be forgoing the drinking and the Studio on Xmas eve to attend mass. As midnight rolls around and the rest of the Consortium breaks out their instruments O suddenly shows up in the Studio. The SoCo and Jack are poured and a tune is made up on the spot. Finishing touches are added the following (Christmas) evening.
The album closes with “There is a Light That Never Goes Out”, an acoustic cover of The Smiths classic. The golden voice of Arif amidst a backdrop of strings, flute and light background vocals lends itself as a gentle ear pleasing way to wind down the album.
released September 26, 2009
Exciting Sounds of Savo Consortium members participating on this recording - Savo, chock, Orlando, KofD, Shannon, Justin, Marji, Phil Sweet, Ralph, Becky, Daniel, SeMe, Debbie, Darryl, Arif and Jennifer Loveless
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