Posts Tagged ‘ denison witmer

btv052 Denison Witmer : Live

Denison Witmer
“Live” (btv052)
Buy Online

Track listing:

1. Intro
2. Things Never Turn Out the Way You Think
3. You Got Me Good
4. I Won’t Let You Down
5. 24 Turned 25
6. You and Me
7. Birds (Neil Young cover)
8. Stations
9. Steven
10. Are You Lonely
11. The ’80s
12. Thirteen (Big Star cover)
13. Meant To Be
14. Forgiven

When Denison Witmer was about to depart on a national tour in the fall of 2001, Burnt Toast Vinyl’s Scott Hatch gave him a compact minidisc recorder, a single stereo condenser microphone, and a huge supply of minidiscs and said, “How about recording your tour?” Dutifully, before the start of each show, Denison inserted a blank disc, hooked up the mic, and pushed the red record button.

Several months and 40+ concerts later, Scott, along with Denison’s brother Douglas Thut Witmer, carefully catalogued, reviewed, scrutinized, and selected the material that appears on this album. The 14 tracks on this project are culled from a half-dozen venues in the U.S. and Canada. It’s just Denison in natural solo form and a few great collaborations with guitarist Matthew Stone and the Cleveland-based band The Six Parts Seven on material that dates from his earliest release to songs written just before the show.



btv053 The Six Parts Seven : The Attitudes of Collapse

The Six Parts Seven
“The Attitudes of Collapse” (btv053)
Buy Online | $8ppd

Track listing:
1. From California to Houston, on Lightspeed
2. On Marriage
3. The Attitudes of Collapse
4. Song of Impossible Things

The Six Parts Seven are very patient men. Spend some time with their three full-length players and you’ll be convinced of it. Since brothers Allen and Jay Karpinski started the band in 1995, Ohio’s finest instrumental outfit has worked to build stunning musical landscapes based wholly on the principles of melody and restraint. The band is careful to avoid the early grave of mediocrity that plagues so many instrumental bands, adding intricate and essential touches to their triguitar, drums and bass setup (a hear tbreaking lap steel , the understated backbone of a grand piano, subtle and tasteful samples).
Nothing is exploited, and the complete package is congruent and sure, boasting a maturity smart enough to not choke the very necessary space where the songs live and breathe.

The Six Parts Seven have perfected their signature lush and leading compositions, leaving listeners dazzled by fresh sonic additions to the independent rock cannon and haunted by a fully inescapable moodiness.

The Six Parts Seven became connected to Burnt Toast Vinyl while touring with roster artist Denison Witmer in spring 2002. Label owner Scott Hatch alternated between daytime Florida spring training baseball games and nighttime shows, becoming friends with the band and proposing a one-sided LP release. Later in 2002, The Six Parts Seven played parts on Witmer’s Philadelphia Songs album released on Burnt Toast Vinyl and toured with him again in Spring 2003. Now, in 2004, the
final result, The Attitudes of Collapse, finally finds its way to retail outlets.

The one-sided LP features 3 brand new songs and a fourth song that was previously recorded and released, but was revamped and rerecorded for this release. Though piano parts have been used by The Six Parts Seven in the past, the songs on The Attitudes of Collapse one-sided LP make heavier use of the piano to carry melodies, shifting the band’s sound in a more focused and refined direction. Piano parts are fundamental to both “From California to Houston by Lightspeed” and “On Marriage” and the result is more restrained and refined than other releases. The shifting dynamics are still present, but tweaked to be less rambunctious. The repetitive use of spoken samples in “From California to Houston by Lightspeed” is as close as the band gets to actually adding vocals to their instrumental songs themselves. The title track drops the piano in favor of warm lap steel warbles, light drum beats and cymbal crashes, and layered guitar and bass parts in their signature style. “Song of Impossible Things” distills the chord progression of the traditional “Amazing Grace” with unbelievable interpretation that makes the song wholly theirs, perhaps a successful result to which the song title alludes.



btv077 Denison Witmer : Safe Away LP

Denison Witmer
“Safe Away” (btv077)
Buy Online | LPTrack listing:
1. Steven
2. Breathe In This Life
3. Over My Head
4. This and That
5. Closer to the Sun
6. What Will Stay?
7. Miles
8. Dain
9. Los Angeles
10. Around Everything
11. I Would Call You Now
12. Sarah’s Bridge
13. I Won’t Leave
14. Broken
15. Say You’ll Stick Around
16. Meant to Be
Denison Witmer’s debut album, Safe Away, was recorded in the fall of 1997 with Don Peris (The Innocence Mission) who produced the album and played guitar on many of the album’s simple tracks. Many of these songs were written on an extended trip to Japan during 1996 and 1997 as reflections on many of his experiences and relationships both in Japan and at home. These are heartfelt, deeply emotional and sincere songs of love and broken hearts.

The songs of Safe Away are stripped down, but remain lush and powerful, akin to Mark Kozelek, Harvest-era Neil Young, or Nick Drake, but still unique in their own right. Safe Away is a simply recorded album capturing an airy intimacy and beauty. These recordings remain a favorite of Witmer’s growing fan base.

Witmer originally released Safe Away independently in the early winter of 1998. The album sold quickly through Denison’s touring efforts and went out-of-print. Witmerenlisted the help of his friend Scott French to record two additional songs to add to the album. The additional tracks were captured to 8-track cassette, showcasing the simple beauty of Witmer’s craft.

Denison and Burnt Toast Vinyl’s Scott Hatch met in the fall of 1997 when Hatch did the design for his original self-released edition of Safe AwayWitmer and Hatch became fast friends. Denison also became the building block for Burnt Toast Vinyl: the first artist to tour nationally, the driving force for growing promotion and publicity, and one of the best selling releases. Denison released three full-lengths (Safe Away, Of Joy and Sorrow, Philadelphia Songs), 2 eps (River BendsThe ‘80s), and a live record on Burnt Toast Vinyl. The btv version of Witmer’Safe Away went out of print in cd near the end of 2004. Now, Burnt Toast Vinyl is now proud to issue Safe Away as a special edition 180g virgin vinyl LP. The sparse, yet beautiful recordings sound phenomenal in the deluxe vinyl format.

The Burnt Toast Vinyl/Denison Witmer connection remains strong. He’s toured on several occasions with bands on the label and members of Saxon Shore back him on live tracks on a double cd re-issue of Safe Away released through The Militia Group in late fall 2006, the label that released Denison‘s latest album, Are You a Dreamer?Denison has also recorded with Rosie Thomas and Sufjan Stevens for Rosie’s latest full-length These Friends of Mine. The association with Stevens also provided a perfect opportunity for jokesters Witmer and Thomas to spoof venerable online music magazine Pitchfork into thinking the sessions also spawned a Thomas-Stevens love child.

Denison Witmer has shared the stage with many musicians such as My Morning Jacket, Sufjan Stevens, Joanna Newsom, Anathallo, Saxon Shore, Richard Buckner, Don Peris, The Innocence Mission, Damien Jurado, and Pedro the Lion. He has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe over his career and his Philadelphia Songs and Are You a Dreamer? were both released in Europe by Sweden’s Bad Taste Records.