btv065 Saxon Shore : Be a Bright Blue
“Be a Bright Blue” (btv065)
|Saxon Shore was formed in the winter of 2001 by Matthew Doty (guitar, piano) and Joshua Tillman (drums) in upstate New York. Founded in the ideal that themes of beauty, hope and despair could be translated without the use of lyrics or objective subject matter, Doty and Tillman began writing songs which would, quickly soon after, appear on 2002’s Be A Bright Blue which was originally released on Doty’s own Broken Factory Records.
Tillman enlisted the help of his brother, Zach Tillman, for bass duties during the sessions. Be A Bright Blue’s austere simplicity and minimal, melodic accessibility dissented from the majority of current instrumental acts by utilizing pop music conventions such as repetition, hooks, and western dynamics, while offering room for solidarity, free interpretations, and thematic independence.
Be A Bright Blue was born out of late night inspiration, a lust for melody, and most likely a subconscious childhood fixation with progressive rock. Layers of intertwined guitars and syncopated drums crescendo with drive and serve as a backdrop for abandon, hope and restlessness. Without the confines of vocals or song structure, Saxon Shore freely explores musical beauty and depth with an intensity and drama most characteristic of film scores. They are unashamedly emotional, relentlessly rock and roll, and independent, straight up.
The band toured in 2002 to support Be A Bright Blue and gained a following through three regional tours, a summer long national tour, and several spot dates near their New York home. Available at shows and direct mail order, Be A Bright Blue sold out of two pressings on the strength of Saxon Shore’s live show and eventually fell out of print. Four tracks from Be A Bright Blue were featured on the 2004 season of MTV’s The Real World : Philadelphia, but fans were unable to get those songs since the album was unavailable. Tracks from Be A Bright Blue were also used on the independent short film Stray which premiered in Los Angeles this winter and ready for the festival circuit. It is now re-released in 2005 on Philadelphia’s Burnt Toast Vinyl.
2005 is a busy year for Saxon Shore. They band briefly toured in the East and Midwest en route to 2005’s SXSW festival in Austin and the MACRoCk festival in Harrisonburg, VA. Saxon Shore have East Coast and Midwest dates set for April and a national June tour with Ill Ease (Too Pure) booked by Silver Leaf Booking in support of their forthcoming cdep Luck Will Not Save Us from a Jackpot of Nothing (31 May). In between the two tours, Saxon Shore will record their third full-length album, tentatively entitled The Exquisite Death of Saxon Shore in Fredonia, NY with Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Low, Mogwai, Mercury Rev) which will be released in autumn 2005.