Through their rich but rustic sound, Toronto roots-rock outfit The Young Novelists deliver a dose of honesty in audible form.|
Made us strangers, their upcoming sophomore effort, showcases a significant sonic progression for the band. Ripe with raw but elegant instrumentation and stacked multi-layered harmonies, their pure take on folk-tinged rock translates equally well from the stereo or stage.
What first began as a stack of songs that frontman Graydon James had amassed behind the drum kit in various bands during his university years eventually became a collection of recordings performed by the six-piece band, Graydon James & The Young Novelists. But over time, as James wife Laura Spink became integral to the creative process and the band began performing and touring as a duo, the more succinct banner of The Young Novelists was born.
Since dropping their debut EP, a small town eulogy, in 2011, theyve made impressive strides up the industry incline. Their catalog also includes a live collection and their 2012 debut LP, in the year you were born, which cemented their status as an act to watch. Now, with made us strangers, The Young Novelists are set to make their most impactful musical statement to date.
We were looking to inject a bit of excitement and edginess into it this time around, James says, but also wanted the recordings to be more organic and true. For that, The Young Novelists enlisted the aid of producer Carlin Nicholson (Jason Collett, The Golden Dogs), also a member of Toronto rock outfit Zeus. Together, with a minimalist approach to recording no pitch correction, no click tracks, and some cuts captured entirely live off the floor they added some grit to The Young Novelists sonic grace.
Cuts like brothers in the garage showcase the fruit of that union rooted in folk with the bands captivating and catchy vocal phrasing but boosted by slightly overdriven guitar and a triumphantly authentic chorus. Similarly, come back to me is an upbeat earworm that showcases their breadth of influence. Conversely, more sombre offerings like always make the mistake this one anchored by Spinks vocals are delicate but alluring.
This record hinges on interpersonal relationships, James explains of made us strangers underlying lyrical theme, which includes both traditional and non-traditional ones from brothers in a band to a torrid love triangle to a new father missing the sound of his sons voice when theyre apart.
As a published author with one novel The Mall of Small Frustrations to his name and two others in the works, James words carry a weight and depth that demand repeat listens. The hope, he says, is having a listener connect with the sentiment he explores, if not the specific subjects. As personal as the songs are, he offers, I hope theyre connecting to other people in a way that goes beyond the situations I was writing about.
That connection is perhaps most intense from the stage. From major festivals like Mariposa and CMW to iconic theatres like the Neptune in Halifax to trendsetting hotbeds like Torontos Horseshoe Tavern, The Young Novelists show is as engaging as it is endearing and has earned them slots alongside the likes of Cuff the Duke and The Strumbellas.
The band will have many more opportunities to take to the road in the coming months. Its going to be a busy year, James says, but not with the slightest hint of unease; instead, its a shred of excitement that belies his modest demeanor.
Honesty and transparency. Theyre at the very core of made us strangers, from the lyrics to the music to the way it was recorded, and thats sure to foster closer connections between The Young Novelists and their current and future followers.
graydon james vocals/acoustic guitar
laura spink vocals/percussion
ANTHONY da COSTA
Anthony da Costa is a26-year-old singer/songwriter/guitarist living in Austin, TX. Originally hailing from Pleasantville, NY (about 45 minutes north of New York City), Anthony has been writing songs since the age of 10 and playing professionally since 13. In 2007 (at the age of 16), Anthony became the youngest winner ever of both the Falcon Ridge and Kerrville Folk Festival songwriting competitions. He has released 7 albums and 3 EPs to date, including collaborations with Abbie Gardner of Red Molly, John Elliott, and Raina Rose. His most recent solo album, Secret Handshake was released in 2012 and debuted by American Songwriter Magazine. Sing Out! once said that hes an outstanding writer of plainspoken Americana. Cool.
Anthony has opened for the likes of Loretta Lynn, Dan Bern, Judy Collins, Suzanne Vega, Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation) and other awesome folks like that. He plays guitar in a band called Nancy and Beth, featuring actor/singers Megan Mullally (Will and Grace, Childrens Hospital) and Stephanie Hunt (Friday Night Lights, Californication, How To Live With Your Parents for the Rest Of Your Life). That band has played some amazing stages, including Conan OBriens late night show on TBS (CONAN).
For four years, Anthony toured around the country while simultaneously earning a history degree at Columbia University, where he graduated in 2013. Now in Austin, he has started a new project called DA COSTA, which features his songs in an electric trio format. Be on the lookout for their debut album soon!
me and thee coffeehouse (View)
28 Mugford St
Marblehead, MA 01945
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|Dog Friendly: No|
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