Influenced by the likes of Elliott Smith, The Gaslight Anthem, Weezer, Hot Water Music, and Thrice, “Slate Violet” by Portland-based indie-rock outfit THE ANGRY LISAS offers a smoky, energized and soulful cocktail of rock’n’roll, indie and punk rock that shakes and stirs the mixture with other influences and trademark style of one of the most interesting new rock bands under the radar. Today, we’re giving you the first listen of the record, with more details behind their projects, and their first-hand commentary below!
“I’ve always had a really hard time letting go of things. There are these moments that stick in my brain that are really hard for me to stop thinking about. I overanalyze everything, every detail.” For Sean Taylor, principal songwriter of Portland-based indie-rock outfit The Angry Lisas, there are many reasons why history will not let him go.
𝑅𝑒𝑔𝑟𝑒𝑡, 𝑛𝑜𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑙𝑔𝑖𝑎, 𝑔𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑡𝑢𝑑𝑒, 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑠𝑜𝑟𝑟𝑜𝑤 𝑐𝑜𝑙𝑜𝑟 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑡𝑙𝑒𝑠𝑠 𝑚𝑒𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 ℎ𝑒 ℎ𝑎𝑠 𝑐𝑜𝑙𝑙𝑒𝑐𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑜𝑣𝑒𝑟 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑙𝑎𝑠𝑡 𝑑𝑒𝑐𝑎𝑑𝑒, 𝑚𝑒𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑑𝑖𝑠𝑝𝑙𝑎𝑦 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑚𝑠𝑒𝑙𝑣𝑒𝑠 𝑖𝑛 𝑏𝑟𝑖𝑠𝑡𝑙𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑠𝑖𝑡𝑦 𝑜𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑏𝑎𝑛𝑑’𝑠 𝑢𝑝𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎𝑙𝑏𝑢𝑚, 𝑆𝑙𝑎𝑡𝑒 𝑉𝑖𝑜𝑙𝑒𝑡.
The act of writing is not merely a passion for Taylor, but also a necessity; it is the sole means by which he is able to process and heal from those chapters of his past. “I need that process to do that for me. Cheap man’s therapy.”
Slate Violet pairs these instances with a rich palette of guitars and rolling drums that beg to be unleashed through car speakers while tearing across a moonlit highway. The Angry Lisas reflect not only pain, but also, and more importantly, the ecstatic relief of its release, a relief that comes in the form of riff-rock anthems that are as catchy as they are earnest. The result is an emotional atlas that tackles some of the most challenging moments in Taylor’s twenties with bold self-reflection, and most notably, humility, as he faces the reality that it is often our own faults that are the most difficult to accept.
Vocalist Sean Taylor comments: “Slate Violet is a record I wrote about the path I took through my twenties and my attempt at trying to make sense of most of it. I turned thirty this year and this album was at the crossroads of where I’d been for the last decade and where I was going. To me it was about telling the stories I felt were at the core of my experiences. The highs and lows at the center of the unique experiences that bring us together.
If I would have been writing this six months ago, I would have given a totally different answer about what this record means. At the beginning of the year I was looking through a vastly different lens than I am now. This year has been about survival for a lot of folks, from the pandemic, unrest across the country, to our home state of Oregon being on fire. So right now this record has been serving as a reminder that even when the world feels unbalanced, and problems seem insurmountable, there are small moments that bring us together in the most substantial ways.”
The forthcoming record was produced by Mike Sahm and The Angry Lisas, and engineered, mixed, and mastered by Mike Sahm at Dream Awake Audio in Portland, OR. It features Sean Taylor on guitar and vocals, Cody French on guitar, Daniel Marcus on bass, and Jason Howe on drums. The band has stayed busy with the release of two records since 2017, and a series of west coast dates that have landed him on stages supporting artists such as John Moreland, John Calvin Abney, and Chad Price of Drag the River.