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THIS IS A VINYL-ONLY RELEASE!
Plenty of great music has been the byproduct of a singular vision; that "man-alone" in the studio producing genius works; Brian Wilson, Curt Boettcher, Pete Townshend have all chained themselves to the mixing console (metaphorically speaking) for the sake of music as something "more". Tuscon, AZ's Matt Rendon know plenty about being the "man-alone" in the studio. Ever since he debuted The Resonars in the early Nineties - a project that started out as a band, dissolved & then just became the fictional "band" identity for Rendon alone - he's produced six albums of Sixties mod-inflected power pop all by himself in his home studio. The Butterscotch Cathedral is the latest album from Rendon & his first project outside of The Resonars since 2004.
The Butterscotch Cathedral "s/t" debut is comprised of only three tracks total; one shorter song "Loud Heavy Sun", & two longer suites both nearing the 18 minute mark ("Side A" and "Lisa's Dream"). In this day & age, sidelong tracks in the context of a "rock & roll band" are scarce, and 'The Butterscotch Cathedral' hearkens back to an era that could produce albums like 'Smile' & 'Quadrophenia' without batting an eye. Rendon's had two decades to familiarize himself with his home studio & on this album he's never sounded more at home. Free from the expectations of what it means to create a "Resonars album", 'The Butterscotch Cathedral' finds Rendon experimenting & taking risks in new & exciting ways. Rendon attacks the tunes here with renewed vigor, with every song crackling with shimmering melodic intensity & the sharpest hooks this side of The Brill Building. The tunes embedded within the albums sides ebb & flow from fiery rockers to emotive ballads, woven together in a psychedelic tapestry by Rendon & studio-mate Jim Waters. They fold & unfold onto each other like the rolling ocean tides. Songs like "Waterfall Parasol" & "Uncle Tommy's Song" are snappy power pop numbers, utilizing the Resonars model as a springboard into new territory along with the upliftingly melancholic dirge of "Saxifrage Drive" & the 17-minute "Lisa's Dream" suite on Side Two which bounces to & fro between sparkling pop, acoustic balladry, psychedelic mindfuckery & gorgeous, layered vocal harmonies.
The album's lysergically-leaning artwork was provided by designer (and fellow Tuscon native) Jason Willis, a sly nod to the forward thinking & visually striking design work of the ESP label & the album is pressed on black vinyl & includes a download code. Won't you come inside...?
RIYL: The Beach Boys, The Who, Animal Collective, Todd Rundgren, The Hollies, Pretty Things, Tame Impala