John Harrison has been in something of a sustained period of creative and eclectic output via his shape-shifting outfit, Jphono1
. This time John Harrison has rejoined with his current rhythmic collaborators, John Crouch (Caltrop, Solar Halos, Kerbloki) and Jimmy Thompson (Randall Brice Bickford, North Elementary), for his fourth record in the span of two years and first of 2022 “Rectify Mercy”.
“Rectify Mercy” is the spiritual successor to 2021’s “Parliament”. In moments, however, it incorporates some of the textures of the “You Are Here To Be Around” volume 1 & 2 albums. These sounds are more often created through unique effect manipulations, however, than synth explorations. Album opener “Let Us Let Go” features a riff and solo section with a guitar all but transmuted into a harmonica, and other moments of the album explore how far you can morph a six-string while still finding anchors in classic psych-rock stylingsWebsite
Secret Monkey Weekend are family rock trio, ie. a rhythm section / songwriting team of two teen sisters and their Americana guitarist father. Their debut album "All The Time In The World" was produced by Don Dixon (R.E.M. / Smithereens, et. al.) and released in late March 2022. They emerged with a set of 11 songs that are summery, upbeat, yet smooth Laurel Canyon and 60s and 70s “pure pop” inspired hook-filled 3-minute gems.
"I never thought I would hear a band that sounded like a teenage girl fronting NRBQ, but this is it and wow did I need this in my life!" - Jonathan Scott, The Doleful Lions
"A basket of non-stop ear candy. Great hooks, arrangements, harmonies." - Danny Gotham
“Even with high hopes, I was not prepared for some of the pure-pop beauty that Secret Monkey Weekend were bringing to the Fidelitorium for Don Dixon to capture.” - Jeffrey Dean FosterWebsite
Starting in early 2015, singer Hope Nicholls took tentative steps in the daunting shoes of Phil Collins and Levon Helms, attempting to keep the beat on drums while crooning. The former vocalist for 80’s college rock main-stays Fetchin Bones, 90’s pissed-off Sugarsmack and 2000’s secret Snagglepuss hit the skins with a vengeance and no shits given. Aaron Pitkin added his signature riffage: It’s Snakes marked his return to guitar, a first since the ‘Bones epoch. Long time collaborator Darrin Gray (bass) and fellow member of Snagglepuss coached Nicholls on drumming and believed it just might work. Guitarist Greg Walsh believed as well and the dream was real. Nicholls took the name It’s Snakes from a Lynda Barry comic strip that featured a nonchalant retail encounter with Medusa, legendary snake goddess and first female super villain. The eponymous first album was recorded over hot dogs and beers, July 4th weekend 2016, in Nashville’s legendary Sound Emporium Studio with Chris Shinn as producer. The 2nd album was released in summer of 2018, also recorded by Mr. Shinn. Both albums show a range of influences and style that can that can be traced through decades of adoration of all genres, trash and treasure alike, a little Rolling Stones, a little Pylon, a little James Brown, a lot all their own.