Western Massachusetts’ purveyors of all things loud, KINDLING, have teamed with UPROXX magazine to premiere “For Olive” another massive song from Hush, their upcoming full length due out November 10th from 6131 Records. Check it out below and go here to read out interview, conducted months before bigger fishes spotted them, ha!
“For Olive” opens Hush with a towering wall of dense fuzz and indelible melodies that set the stage for an album’s worth of powerful shoegaze-inflected alternative. The strength of “For Olive,” like many tracks on Hush, lies in Kindling’s ability to combine disparate influences and elements to make music that rises above genre signifiers. The band takes everything from hidden Black Sabbath inspirations to sitar textures (provided by Cornershop’s Anthony Saffery) and mixes them into one huge and exciting sound. UPROXX describes this ability to deftly navigate multiple lanes of guitar music, saying, “classifying Kindling’s sound as [shoegaze] might be a little reductive. The hooks are bigger, the guitars are heavier, and the drum fills hit harder.”
Photo by Reid Haithcock
The band has also announced a run of East Coast tour dates immediately following Hush’s release, see full itinerary below.
11/09 New Haven, CT @ Three Sheets
11/10 Brooklyn, NY @ Trans Pecos
11/11 Florence, MA @ 13th Floor
11/12 Providence, RI @ News Cafe
11/16 Burlington, VT @ Speaking Volumes
11/17 Sherbrooke, QC @ Le Murdoch w/ Jet Black
11/18 Montreal, QC @ Atomic Cafe w/ Jet Black
11/19 Cambridge, MA @ TBA
More about the band:
Western Massachusetts isn’t exactly the first place that comes to mind when one thinks of alternative music, but the sleepy area boasts a surprising musical lineage as the birthplace of indie rock icons like Dinosaur Jr, to more recent headliners like Speedy Ortiz and Potty Mouth. Easthampton’s Kindling are part of this insular environment that seems to breed a special kind of ambitious individualism: a drive to make bold music that is at once massively appealing and uncompromisingly distinct. Now, with their sophomore full length, Hush, Kindling are poised to continue this tradition and make a particularly loud impression of their own.
Started as the recording project of Stephen Pierce and Gretchen Williams in 2014, Kindling evolved into a full-fledged band through a full-length and a prolific series of EPs that would hone their dreamy lo-fi beginnings into a muscular wall of sound. While much of Kindling’s work could be given the shoegaze tag, the band always hinted at something broader and more immediate amongst the fuzz. Now with Hush the band has achieved a unique blend of crushing guitars and undeniable melodies that is sure to appeal to not just shoegaze fans, but to anyone who has a taste for towering alternative rock.
To record Hush, the band teamed with engineer and longtime collaborator, Justin Pizzoferrato (The Pixies, Speedy Ortiz, The Hold Steady, Dinosaur Jr.) to track the album, and Josh Bonati (Slowdive, Wild Nothing, Sufjan Stevens) for mastering, and the two perfectly captured Kindling’s impressive dynamic range. For a band whose sound is so firmly rooted in loud guitars, Kindling are experts at knowing when to pull back the volume, allowing for truly powerful dynamics in their music. Hush also finds Kindling experimenting with unexpected instrumentation, like subtle sitar layers and the Corgan-esque grandeur of mellotron (borrowed from J. Mascis and recorded at his home studio). Pierce and Williams use shades of hope and compassion to paint a striking picture of the grieving process, with their vocal interplay always providing an abundance of genuine hooks.
Hush offers plenty of guitar rock touchstones: pieces of Kindling’s Western MA musical roots, their surface ‘90s influences, and even much harder to spot references in their enormous sound. But in the end it’s Kindling’s attention to true song-craft above all else that sets them apart, and whether set to a squall of distortion or a wave of atmospherics, Hush has this in spades.