The Family Crest, Goodnight, Texas, The Sky Colony

The Family Crest

Goodnight, Texas

The Sky Colony

Thu, May 10, 2018

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

$12.00 - $14.00

Tickets at the Door

This event is 21 and over

The Family Crest
The Family Crest
From the onset, Liam McCormick, the mastermind behind The Family Crest, knew that Beneath the Brine was an audacious project. But so is The Family Crest itself.

The brainchild of McCormick, The Family Crest was started as a recording project in 2009 with co-founder John Seeterlin (bass). “We were in another band and had become disillusioned about what that band had become about,” explains McCormick. “Everyone wanted to be rock stars at the expense of the music. John and I were actually planning on leaving music at that point because we wanted something that in ten years we could be proud of.”

Instead of leaving music, they set out to reinvent how it could be created, starting The Family Crest. “We always liked making music with people -- getting a bunch of people together and singing. So we put ads everywhere,” says McCormick. “We posted on Craigslist and emailed old friends from school.” The outcome was greater than the original duo imagined, with 80 people credited on the first recording the band produced. From that a band emerged, at the urging of the guest musicians, who wanted to hear the songs performed live. “We’ve worked with a lot of conservatory students as well as people who just sing in the shower,” McCormick adds. “It became a lot about giving these people a chance to express themselves without being locked into a commitment.”

Now a seven-piece core band, boasting over 400 “Extended Family” members, The Family Crest will release Beneath the Brine in February 2014 on Tender Loving Empire. Just with its previous recordings, the San Francisco band set out to capture a plethora of instruments -- including bassoon, vibraphone and French horn -- in unique places, such as living rooms, churches and cafes across the West Coast.

Following on the heels of last summer’s The Headwinds EP (which earned fans in WXPN and Paste), Beneath the Brine shows that McCormick’s ambition was well placed. The expansive breadth of arrangements – from dark, classical romanticism (“Beneath the Brine”) to horn-laden sounds akin to the Roaring 20s (“Howl”) -- are complemented by the incredible range of McCormick’s voice. Beneath the Brine also showcases The Family Crest’s ability to infuse pop into complex arrangements, with songs like “Love Don’t Go” and “The World.” The album is a sweeping soundscape befitting the oceanic theme of the title and what SPIN notes as “ambition wide enough to swallow you whole.”

It has also proven The Family Crest’s belief that anyone can be musical when given the opportunity. “We live in a very disconnected age,” notes Laura Bergmann (flute/keys), “so it’s a really special experience to have a recording session in a cafe that’s open to the public and to sing next to people you’ve never met before, doing something together that’s tangible and very meaningful.”

“When I listen to the record,” adds McCormick, “it’s like listening to the last two years of my life. All of my best friends that I’ve met are in one place, together.”
Goodnight, Texas
Goodnight, Texas
Conventional wisdom says the two frontmen of a band shouldn’t live on opposite sides of the United States, but that's never seemed to deter Avi Vinocur and Patrick Dyer Wolf.

Goodnight, Texas is a band whose strength lies in unexpected sweet spots. Drawing their name from Pat and Avi’s onetime geographic midpoint (the real town of Goodnight in the State of Texas, a tiny hamlet east of Amarillo), the four-piece also exists at the center of its songwriters’ contrasting styles — via a 1913 Gibson A mandolin and a 2015 Danelectro, at the crossroads of folk and blues and rock ‘n’ roll, in a place where dry wit and dark truths meet hope and utmost sincerity.

Conductor is GNTX’s third full-length. It’s ambitious, dynamic, and more electrically inclined than 2012’s A Long Life of Living or 2014’s Uncle John Farquhar, carrying the listener from barn-burner to soul-searcher to banjo ballad and back again, all built on a powerful foundation from bassist Scott Griffin Padden and drummers Alex Nash and Kyle Caprista. It’s a record colored by grief, confusion, joy, the weight of the world: in the four years since the band’s last release, they lost Pat’s dad, Avi’s grandfather, and Scott’s mom. Pat and his wife had a baby boy. Alex became a professional baseball umpire. Britain left the EU and Donald Trump is the president of the United States.

But Conductor is, more accurately, a record about turning points — personal, political, musical, global — and their possibilities. A Long Life of Living drew inspiration from the Civil War and Appalachia; Uncle John Farquhar, from family lore, in the midwest in the late 1800s. Conductor wanders through the American Southwest in the early decades of the 20th century. It’s a moment when the United States has claimed the land from sea to shining sea, poised to become the world power, a great furnace of both progress and destruction. Electricity is coming into its own. The world’s population is about to explode. Against a backdrop of desert sunsets from a century ago, these songs exist on a precipice — as do their creators, as does the listener, as do we all.

-Emma Silvers
The Sky Colony
The Sky Colony
Since summer of 2012, the folk outfit from Skagit Valley, WA, The Sky Colony, has been through thick and thin as a group. The founding members Kyle Findley-Meier (acoustic guitar, vocals) and Ben Woods Meyer (electric guitar, vocals) have entertained many performances and tumult with several selections of ensembles, eventually leading to their debut full-length album, "In A Dream", released early in 2015. In their musical endeavors, the band's complex and harmonic sound has added a rhythmic spectrum with the recent affirmation of members Jeff Lacy (drums, vocals) and Andy Ingram (upright bass, vocals). The group has been on the road around the Pacific Northwest, and looks to take the stage in several west coast festivals in the summer of 2016.

"The Sky Colony's most recent release, "In A Dream", is beautifully haunted with a sense of place, with old churches and empty barns, gathering places, spaces imbued with mystery and spirit. It comes through in their music, what they call "dream folk," harmony filled songs of awakening, of Sunday mornings, open windows and the beautiful possibilities of a new day. The music sets up a fire in the mind, a place to congregate around and open yourself to a luminous spirituality: righteous hymns for a bright new world." - Scot Casey, What's Up Magazine

"What’s appealing here as well is the total lack of special effects and embellishment. It’s musicianship: human voices lending themselves to a carefully constructed superlative relationship between melody and emotion. That may be a mouthful, but this was not slapped together hastily – it’s arranged and thoughtful." John Apice, No Depression
Venue Information:
The Shakedown
1212 N. State St
Bellingham, WA, 98225
http://shakedownbellingham.com/