by Lera Lynn
...If you haven’t met Lera Lynn, you should.
~ Abandoned CouchesTake a listen
Thomas Hardy Morris
Let's get the obvious and clichéd out of the way immediately, shall we? These two Thomas Hardy Morris songs, "Beauty Rest" and "Hardstuff," are worlds different from those of Mr. Morris's other band, Athens, GA's mighty Dead Confederate . There. Are we good on that? Thx.
For indeed these delicate, melancholy, and atmospheric songs need not be mentioned alongside that other band again. (All due respect, of course.)
The first effort here, "Beauty Rest," immediately recalls another (now former) Athens act, the dreamy duo Azure Ray, owing mainly to the ethereal texture that keyboardist Thayer Serrano's simple yet haunting F note provides. (Azure Ray did simple yet haunting really fucking well.) The second, "Hardstuff," its melody vaguely reminiscent of Neil Young's "Tell Me Why," lets Matt Stossel's pedal steel take the instrumentation lead and is accordingly the "warmer" of the two. Though, it hardly needs to be said, neither of these songs are very "sunny."
Both deal thematically with concern, excess, exhaustion, and redemption: world- weary subjects on the one hand but ones on the other that are also plenty common. I do not know Mr. Morris, and wouldn't suggest that these songs are autobiographical at all, let me be clear. My own experiences--- both personal and vicarious-- back up this postulate, which is a roundabout way of saying that I related to these songs.
Of the songs, Morris says, "I was actually inspired by my honeymoon. My new bride and I had very little money to spend on a post-wedding trip and I had coincidentally been asked by some friends in the band Bad Books to do a short tour in the Northeast, starting with a few days in NYC. I had never really played solo before, and certainly not in front of sold out crowds, but I had a handful of back- pocket songs and I knew that this was probably our only way to have a honeymoon, so that is what we did. The shows went well, yet I quickly realized that writing songs that can carry weight on their own, without a band in mind, takes a totally different approach. As soon as I got home, I wrote and demoed about 20 songs with that feel and idea in mind. Although I planned on having more instrumentation involved in the eventual recording of the songs, I wrote the initial songs as ones that could be played alone and still stand out.
Fans should be on the lookout for a studio recording of these songs and more in 2012."
~lee.Back to all sessions