On February 7 2015, The Sky Colony independently (Kickstarter) released its debut album In A Dream.
First of all, who is The Sky Colony, I hear you ask? Well, it’s not that simple a question to answer, actually.
The band has been around since 2012 but has transformed itself a few times since then. First up, was a three-piece with a separate lyricist/producer/financial backer which floundered on interpersonal tensions. The backbone left was Kyle Findley-Meier (acoustic guitar, vocals) and Ben Meyer (electric guitar, vocals) who rewrite some earlier songs, toured the Pacific Northwest region of the USA and were soon joined live by drummer Jeff Lacy and banjo/bass player Molly Hazel. While Lacy and Hazel are heavily featured on In A Dream and co-produced and arranged all the songs, The Sky Colony appears to be a Meier/Meyer duo, even though some photos on the album cover (see above) feature Hazel and some don’t.
Anyway, the important thing is that In A Dream is a fine record indeed.
On the band’s website the music is deemed ‘dream folk’, coming from lush rural Washington State. It’s not a bad description. There’s traditional folk song structure, but there’s a kind of unbound playing that sounds fresh and like it comes straight from the front family porch. Instruments seem to be jamming, rather than repeating some well-worn path – Meyer’s electric guitar in particular gives the sound a distinctive twist. Add exact harmonies, an eclectic mix of music styles and you have a heady pastoral sound.
In A Dream was recorded at a converted former Catholic church on a 24-track analog reel-to-reel tape machine by Nicholas Wilbur at Unknown Studio in Anacortes, Washington. The antiquated structure with its resonant wood hall, provided the kind of sound the band was after – raw, warm and bright.
Additional musicians on the album include Ben Goe (Cello) and Brittany Ash (vocals on “Time”), with a collective chorus on the track “The Hills”.
The lead-off track “Be Loved” opens with delightful finely picked banjo, lightly played electric guitar and male/female vocal interplay – see clip below. The bouncy jug band tune “Cosmic Living Room” follows, while the title track “In A Dream” typifies the bands ‘dream folk’ sound that is pervasive throughout the album. “Time” has a wonderful interplay between the two guitars and male voices. “Don’t Wait for Me” has a more traditional folk approach with a gorgeous catchy chorus and an intersection of sublime playing. “Lost Relation” and “Joben” have a Fleet Foxes-type-vibe, with the closing anthemic “The Hills” memorable for its beautiful choir and sacred harp singing.
In A Dream is refreshing, individual and authentic.
You can purchase the CD here.
You can watch the clip for “Be Loved” below Thanks Sue Dumond Music Publicity and Media Services