Saredren Wells Sets May Release
An ornate, orchestral, haunting, and conceptual effort, Saredren Wells' new brand of folk acts as the Midwestern response to Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, and Sigur Ros.
Saredren Wells's debut LP, "Memories are Hunting Horns…," is unmistakably a product of and tribute to his home. As Wells describes, "When I started making the album, I wanted it to be a kind of homage to the city of Louisville, to its musical past and the artists who we all, as Louisvillians, grew up listening to."
To that end, Wells made a real effort to connect the dots of his musical past. He contacted many of his childhood artistic heroes, including David Grubbs (Gastr del Sol) and Brian McMahan (Slint, The For Carnation), who became something akin to spiritual advisers, and Rachel Grimes (of famed chamber collective Rachel's), who he asked(she politely obliged) to oversee him in his string writing efforts. Wells then tracked the album with a string of Louisville luminaries, doing initial work with Paul Oldham(of Palace Brothers fame) and Parlour/Sapat's Steve Good(who engineered an Evergreen 7" Wells was fond of growing up) before finally settling in with friend and producer Kevin Ratterman (Elliot, Wax Fang), who served as a kind of project supervisor, helping to piece everything together and capture whatever final performances were needed. Wells then travelled to Louisville's historical artistic sister city, Chicago, IL, doing final touch-ups and mixing both at John McIntyre's (Tortoise) SOMA Studios and Steve Albini's (you know who Steve Albini is) Electrical Audio. Looking back, Wells figures he worked with just about every artist that influenced him while he was growing up. "It's pretty amazing, really. I got to meet and work with many of the people who have made this city what it is, and with their help and encouragement I made the record I've always dreamed of making."
Wells's hometown pride aside, clearly much of what informs Wells aesthetic resides outside of Louisville's musical city limits. "Like most people I'm interested in lots of things--in movies, in books, in all kinds of music, in short all things art-related. There are so many wonderful avenues to art-making, and it seems that no matter how hard I try to stay going down just one I always end up wanting to branch out and explore them all, often all at once. I just seem to instinctively want to incorporate as many things as I possibly can into whatever I do. The album and its associated imagery are hopefully a reflection of that." Clearly whatever Wells does is a study in amalgamation. Whether it's in his music or in the album's ever-evolving multimedia website, things are ever colliding: Smithsonian Folk Anthology-style balladeering plays with Charles Ives-esque string textures, French New Wave-like film stills accentuate song titles culled from late nineteenth century symbolist poems, layerings of what appear as memories interrupt live performance videos, and there is even a song name appropriated from one of famed Dada artist Marcel Duchamp's readymades. In short, Wells' work, whether in the musical world or otherwise, is at its core an exercise in combining. "There is no one thing without the other," remarks Wells, "I'd like for whatever I do to reflect that."
Saredren Wells will be on tour supporting Memories Are Hunting Horns... this spring. The album will be released May 11th, and you can find it(and him) on the web at www.saredrenwells.com. Louisville for Lovers will release the limited edition (500) vinyl LP with a 4 postcard set and a coupon for a free mp3 copy of Memories Are Hunting Horns... You can pre-order at (http://louisvilleisforlovers.com/)