Onstage, bassist Jon Samuels is the only Friendship member who stands up. He is usually swaying back and forth as the songs bear down, pulling together and apart. Friendship’s new record, Dreamin’ (out Nov 8th on Orindal Records) is an exorable wave of motion, endlessly rocking between intimacy and loneliness.
The contemplative alt-country songs on Dreamin’ were recorded to tape in July last year with the help of The Low Anthem’s Jeff Prystowsky. The band moved away from the inclusion of digitally programmed drums and rhodes piano for Dreamin’, opting instead for a warmer, more organic aesthetic and a starker performance. Most of the songs on Dreamin’ took shape while Dan Wriggins (vocals and guitar) and Mike Cormier (drums) worked and lived as groundskeepers at a private estate in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, frequently driving into Philadelphia for shows and friends. The record is set both in the country and the city – community, peacefulness, and isolation can all be heard and felt throughout the superb new record.
LAMB is a nightmare where pop music is heard distantly while you arrive at a scrap yard in a powdered wig. And in this distance is a lithe figure keeping an eye out for shade in a sweltering Baltimore summer. You inch a little bit closer and can see Jordan Romero. He’s wearing a Department of Public Works uniform, blowing the dust off forms exotic and broken-down, talking about sea pigeons and lemons under ice. All throughout the Maryland region you can hear it, a grinding, grumbling sticky sound like melodic dump trucks tracing the city. In this place all popular and unpopular music is left to bake in a hot car.
Muun Bato materialized in the summer of 2018 when Joe Werner (First Communion Afterparty, Driftwood Pyre, Bridge Club) & Andy Iwanin (Basement Apartment, The Pitchafits) were rehearsing for a one-time collaboration show in Minneapolis. Both perfect strangers, they found themselves playing improvised guitar & drums that could well have been finished songs. The chemistry was perfect, sprouting an insatiable appetite to write songs together.