Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Deleted Scenes’ Birdseed Shirt nabs an elusive 8.0 rating from Pitchfork as band announces upcoming tour dates.

Album track “Ithaca” gets remixed, group premieres video for “One Long Country Song” shot in the same Metro station in which it was written.

Washington, DC-based band Deleted Scenes recently released its debut album Birdseed Shirt to much critical praise. Notably, the album recently received an 8.0 rating from tastemaking culture website, Pitchfork Media (LINK). The band is currently walking through that opened door by shining a brighter light on its album – one that reveals a record with a style that has already been referred to to as “an acid-trip that is absolutely habit forming” (Madison Isthmus), “gently glazed with cold medication” (The Onion), and “Steeped in a blurry digital haze” (Washington City Paper).

Deleted Scenes will embark on a series of a dozen or so dates throughout May and June in support of Birdseed Shirt. To tide new fans over while they wait to see the group live for the first time, DC DJ AutoRock recently remixed “Ithaca” one of the standout tracks from Birdseed Shirt. Notable blog Arjan Writes debuted the track HERE and it can also be downloaded via the link below.

Additionally, a takeaway-style video for “One Long Country Song,” another album favorite, was recently shot by Brightest Young Things in the same DC Metro station in which the song was initially written. This fascinating clip is posted on the Brightest Young Things website HERE and can be viewed in hi-res on YouTube HERE and embedded via the code included below.

The band offers more insight about the creation of the “One Long Country Song” clip explaining, “It’s illegal to shoot on the DC Metro for homeland security reasons. Luckily nobody arrested us. The setting is perfect for its continual interplay with the lyrics. The song begins ‘It’s one long country song to the Metro / which is five blocks by anyone else’s count,’ and proceeds to process the previous evening’s romantic disaster through the bleary brain-chemistry of an awkward all-nighter.”

“The video’s best moment juxtaposes shots of indifferent commuters in headphones ignoring the performance, with the lyrics ‘and as the long song’s killing you / through white headphones with no bass / and the bottom end is dropped out of your chest / know the morning travelers are all feeling quite the same / oh, but still nobody’s jumping to the tracks.’ The vid starts out a little noisy, but gets perfectly audible after the first verse. An announcement from the conductor concludes the one-shot performance at DC’s Dupont Circle Metro station, which is the station in which the song was actually written, at 6AM, one February 15th.”

In an effort to provide the media with a clear and concise pathway towards covering Deleted Scenes, the band has graciously provided a guide to writing about the group which can be found below. Be sure to check out the MP3s linked below, as well, and check Deleted Scenes out when the band embarks on its upcoming journey across the nation.

Artist: Deleted Scenes
Title: Birdseed Shirt
Label: What Delicate Recordings

01. Turn To Sand
02. Fake IDs (MP3)
03. Take My Life
04. Mortal Sin
05. Got God
06. Ithaca (MP3 REMIX)
07. City That Never Wakes Up
08. One Long Country Song (MP3 VIDEO)
09. Deacons
10. Another Worse Cliché
11. Get Your Shit Together For The Holidays

Deleted Scenes Live:
04/26 College Park, MD @ WMUC In-Studio Performance
05/05 Baltimore, MD @ The Talking Head
05/18 New York, NY @ Piano’s
05/21 Washington, DC @ Black Cat
05/29 Baltimore, MD @ Hexagon
06/02 Nashville, TN @ The End
06/04 Atlanta, GA @ Star Bar
06/06 Jacksonville, FL @ Eclipse
06/11 Dallas, TX @ The Lounge
06/12 Houston, TX @ Notsuoh
06/13 Austin, TX @ Club de Ville
06/15 Phoenix, AZ @ Trunk Space
06/17 Los Angeles, CA @ Silverlake/Fold
07/04 Montreal, PQ @ Divan Orange

It’s Easy To Write About Deleted Scenes
1. A DIY bootstraps story. Band (Deleted Scenes) from a town (Washington, DC) that made DIY into a religion begins booking its own national tours, and sets off in a shitty van to play one sparsely attended show at a time. Months after releasing their debut album to little fanfare and no press campaign, a lucky Pitchfork review (“brave and ferocious,” 8.0) suddenly makes people listen. Band does it the hard way, develops as a live force over three years, and is said to deserve every kind word. Yards of local column inches tell the story of a band “doing it right,” in the words of Washington Post music editor David Malitz.

2. An experimental pop odyssey. Band draws from disparate sources (Radiohead’s restlessness, Dischord’s angst, Morrissey’s sadness, Modest Mouse’s not-mere cleverness) to produce something heart-crushingly fun. Preparing to record its first CD (Birdseed Shirt), band discovers an obscure album of monster songs (The Rude Staircase’s Sookie Jump) and is compelled to hunt down its mysterious creator-the ingenious, first-nameless L. Skell-to recruit him as producer. After recording basic tracks with DC icon J. Robbins, the band holes up for nine painstaking months in a bedroom studio with the socially abhorrent Skell, hacking and screwing together this beast-a thing made less of chords and rhythms than of hair, wire, and skin. They release it on Skell’s own tiny What Delicate Recordings label-a record company run more like an art gallery, with Skell and Andrew Becker (Dischord Records) as its curators.

3. An existential coming of age. A former creative writing student quits fiction, and starts singing what he knows-spiritual despair, hope, disgust, and manic-depression. He goes on to create a confessional coming-of-age work that defies easy summary. Suffused with sadness, humor, self-loathing and post-post-modern self-dismissal, his lyrics are notable for contradictions that transcend simple irony. Lines like “I don’t mind you lying to me / If you think you’re right, you must be” (“Fake IDs”) and “you can fake whatever it takes” (“Get Your Shit Together For The Holidays”) offer problematic solutions-the only kind he can begin to accept. Other songs explore moral hypocrisy, romantic disappointment, and loss of faith with statements that double over on themselves: “If the water should rise, I’m going on a vacation” (“Mortal Sin”); “If you were counting on ideals or a dream / Stay awake, she will steal them in your sleep” (“One Long Country Song”); “Got God, got boring/ Lost God, stayed boring, got drunk” (“Got God”).

4. A band of bros. Four high-school friends put funk-rock on hold, part ways for college and/or shitty jobs, and reconvene, a few years older and more adventurous, to start Deleted Scenes. The musical rapport they developed as kids comes back as naturally as if it had never left, and the band is a unit. It plays like one, garnering one fawning live review after another. Songwriting pair Dan Scheuerman (guitar/vocals) and Matt Dowling (bass/keys/vibes/flexotone) explores a tendentious partnership-Dowling a dynamic rhythmic thinker and Scheuerman a quirky melodic one-and develop into a symbiotic unit, contributing equally to each song. Thoughtful and powerful drumming by Brian Hospital, and polyrhythm-heavy guitar playing by Chris Scheffey complete the Deleted Scenes sound.

Tools and Hi-Res Photos:

On The Web:

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Deleted Scenes In The Press:
“Brave and Ferocious... 8.0” – Pitchfork

“[Deleted Scenes] has hit its stride in a major way on debut album Birdseed Shirt” It’s an album of smart, slippery and varied indie rock songs, but it never feels like the band is forcing things just for the sake of being different. Some songs have the nervous energy of early Talking Heads, while others succeed thanks to intricate subtleties that show an obsessive attention to detail.” – Dave Malitz, Washington Post

Birdseed Shirt, the debut LP from Deleted Scenes, is a creative and emotional album of soaring, hook – laden highs and more tempered lows, with each mood skillfully executed and full of rich imagery and metaphors. Taking the odd title from a Jonathan Safran Foer novel, the duo from Brooklyn and Washington, DC make playfully unpredictable songs that veer in unexpected directions while remaining completely infectious.” – NPR.org

“Not since the days of Fugazi and Discord Records has a D.C. band made such a stir on the national music circuit.” – Washington Post Express

Deleted Scenes’ recent album, Birdseed Shirt, often sounds as if it’s been gently glazed with cold medication, but that doesn’t mean it’s creatively sluggish. All that fine – tuned, morose reverb and space opens up on a band that has enough subtle craft to explore everything from its mopey side (‘Get Your Shit Together For The Holidays’) to psych – rock aggression (‘Mortal Sin’).” – The Onion

“So go see the Deleted Scenes in a small club while you can.” – Madison Isthmus

“The range of emotions – the strength of anger, the saturation of joy – pour out of this new bundle of songs.” – Pasta Primavera

“The first full length album from the Deleted ScenesBirdseed Shirt will take you back to a time when indie rock was not just the sophisticated soft rock that it has morphed into in recent years. Each and every song on this album is not only a musical example of song writing at its best, but a lyrically as well. The strongest songs on the album are many layered walls of sound. The more subdued songs create a cyclical rhythm with catchy hooks that will have you bobbing your head or hosting your own personal dance party.” – Sen Baltimore

“On ‘Mortal Sin,’ the band takes an acid–rock trip that’s absolutely habit – forming, while ‘Ithaca’ (MP3) features a beat that’s weirdly reminiscent of the old Filter tune ‘Take a Picture.’ Even ‘Turn To Sand,’ which begins like a pretty straight–ahead pop song, surprises after a few bars thanks to a sneak attack of blues licks. – Madison Isthmus

Birdseed Shirt is one of the D.C. area’s finest indie–rock CDs ever released, sounding a bit like the reverbed Americana of My Morning Jacket if that band wasn’t always lost in the Grand Canyon, or a more vibrant version of Galaxie 500’s gentle psychedelia.” – Washington Post Express

“It’s shocking that this band isn’t huge.” – DCist

“Delicately psychedelic Americana that makes judicious use of musical gizmos and gadgets to instill an autumnal stoner vibe. Songs like ‘Fake IDs’ (MP3) are steeped in blurry digital haze, as if somebody tried to play the Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory song ‘Pure Imagination’ through a modem circa 1997.” – Aaron Leitko, Washington Post Express

“Where are the labels that should be chomping at the bit to release a band like this?” – J. Robbins on jrobbins.net


College Term Papers said...

I'm actually glad to see all this stuff, to see that this world offers creativity and ideas other than what my lonesome small town provides.

Fanatic Promotion, Inc. said...

Happy to hear that!