Playlists For Your iPod
I Believe I Can Change My World

left to right: Tim, Ed, & Matt from Backyard Tire FireLast weekend I had the opportunity to catch a fantastic pre-release show by our Bloomington Illinois friends, Tim Kramp, Ed Anderson, and Matt Anderson from Backyard Tire Fire.  It was an awesomely full day of music for me and the perfect way to cap-off a GREAT summer day.

This hard-working band is at the top of their game, both live and in the studio--with an excellent new record, The Places We Lived, just released last Tuesday on New York's Hyena Records

The sonically adventurous album, produced by Ed Anderson and Tony San Filippo, is full of road-tested performances of well-crafted songs.  You'll find hints of Tom Petty, Wilco, and even Pink Floyd, with songs about time, space, and place--longing for home, saying the wrong thing at the wrong time, trudging through the daily grind, and knowing when to sign on the dotted line. 

There are plenty of rowdy guitars, big bottom bass, and rock-steady drums as you would expect on a Tire Fire record, but also fun studio experimentation, honky tonk pianos, swirly synths, sliding pedal steel, rich strings, and muted trumpet. I love the vibey orchestration (literally with vibraphone in spots), such as on the clever and catchy tongue-twister and maybe my favorite song out-the-gate, 'Shoulda Shut It.' 

Other standouts for me so far are the title track (featuring Brian Choban on trumpet), the hooky 'Time With You', the crowd-pleasing 'Welcome To The Factory', the playful 'Legal Crime', and the wonderfully wistful final track 'Home Today'. 

The guys are about to hit the road for a midwestern tour, starting with a kickoff show at the Metro in Chicago on September 5.  Other stops include Iowa City, Madison, Minneapolis, Columbia MO, Kansas City, St. Louis, Cleveland, Columbus, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and more.  Check out their site for specific tour dates. Our friend Fish is joining the band on tour to help with guitars, keys, and backing vocals, and he's meshing perfect with the band, helping to reproduce all those great studio textures.

Go buy the record, be sure to stop and see BTF on this tour, and tell them we said hi!

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