OWL MOUNTAIN SESSIONS
By combining film and top-notch studio recording, Owl Mountain Sessions go beyond front-row and take you INSIDE the music. HEAR MORE MUSIC, SEE MORE MUSIC! Be the first to discover our upcoming sessions —
Catalytic creative-juice mixology, a collaborative journey into uncharted musical waters. Co-written on the spot by endearingly eccentric indie-pop multi-instrumentalists Greg Bette (Garçon de Plage, Paris) and Chris Peck (Peck the Town Crier; Fairfax, California), this song began the morning of the session a mere wisp of a motif. A few hours of joint open-mindedness, plenty of playful experimentation, and far more yea’s than nay’s later, led at evening’s close to the birth of “Feather”—now taking flight as Owl Mountain Sessions 013.
A sparkling, sunny daydream with warm retro vibes grows viscous and unfurls into a swirling menagerie of melody, shimmering chimes, astral guitars, and exotic textures, all grounded by the earthy contrast of clay drums and rumbling cavernous toms.
For Session 012, Oakland’s Town Quartet premieres more unpublished work from 19th-c. Czech composer Anton Reicha, with his Quatuor Scientifique No. 11 (Allegro moderato). A music theorist and academic from Beethoven's era, Reicha was known to explore the application of mathematics and philosophical concepts to his unconventional experiments in music. This eleventh movement in a collection of twelve reveals his fugal experimentation based upon the theme from Joseph Haydn's String Quartet Opus 20 No. 5 in F minor.
From Oakland’s Town Quartet: the premiere recording of “Quatuor Scientifique” No. 7, a previously unpublished work from Czech-born composer Anton Reicha (1770-1836). A four-part fugue borrowing the famous theme from Mozart’s “Haffner" symphony, this short piece gives equal voice to each member of the quartet as it ebbs and flows through the many changes of texture and light, finally building to a screaming organ-like finish.
Previously, we brought you avant-grunge rockers Physical Suicide Deterrent System Project's "Geology" for Owl Mountain Sessions 009. Session 010 revisits "Geology" with an acoustic cross-genre interpretation arranged by Matt Montgomery (Versus Them) featuring the Town Quartet, an Oakland, CA string quartet.
PSDSP front man Eli Carlton-Pearson unplugs for this new performance of “Geology", but rocks the grunge nonetheless. Where fellow PSDSP band members Brian Wilkerson's dark melodic electric bass and Michael Pinkham's shimmering drums usually comprise the additional voices in the Bay-Area trio’s “Geology”, composer and musical polymath Matt Montgomery swaps in the Town Quartet with a skillfully layered arrangement for two violins, viola, and cello. The result maintains the original composition’s beautiful thunder and heaviness—provided by Jacob Hansen-Joseph’s viola and Lewis Patzner’s cello—while soaring into otherworldly atmospheres through the full range of octaves on Corey Mike and Mia Bella D’Augelli’s violins.
Collaboration, a convergence of ideas, classical instruments exploring modern expressions—Owl Mountain Sessions 010 “Geology”
Owl Mountain Sessions’ second collaboration with avant-grunge innovators PSDSP has the Northern California trio leading us further down their intriguing path of sublimely dark melodic rockistry. While “Geology”’s almost psychedelic ruminations are more shining and atmospheric, being less steeped in ominous shadows than its pulsating predecessor “Shoulder”, its mood stays heavy and the flavor, deep.
“Geology” presents something transcendent with its viscous, smoldering build. The easy, golden shimmer of its sun-drenched introduction draws us first into a meditative rhythm. From there, lush imagery flows forth, and we gain momentum like blood coursing through the metaphorical corpus. Eli Carlton-Pearson’s layered contemplations pull us ever toward the core, but this is a different kind of introspection. Instead of becoming more compact, each phrase evolves and expands until molecular becomes magmic in scale. It’s like trying to retreat into the little hole in your head but falling instead into a cavernous galaxy of prehistoric ore glittering through the veins of your planetary brain. The infinite within the finite.
OWL MOUNTAIN SESSIONS 008 presents a heavy, heady brew of avant-grunge à la the Bay Area's cult darling PHYSICAL SUICIDE DETERRENT SYSTEM PROJECT (PSDSP). The Marin rock trio's sound frequently references the gnarly thrashing riffs of raw '90s grunge, but PSDSP's penchants for poetic innovation and unconventional elements have them going about their head banging in refreshingly artful, intellectual, rule-breaking fashion. A core inspiration for PSDSP is the life/death cycle within nature and the human psyche; their songs explore the forces of creation, decay, disintegration, and revival both surrounding and within us. Instead of dwelling upon morbid doom and gloom, however, PSDSP exalts the intricate, bewildering beauty hidden within nature's darker elements. At once sinister and joyous, "Shoulder" is a stellar example of PSDSP's brand of zen-filled angst, and is their epic first in a series of upcoming singles.
Session 007 hits the ground running with adrenaline ablaze. "Bullet" is potent, legit gypsy-punk fire--BESO NEGRO's brand-new melodic machine gun that never quits or misses. There’ll be no running for cover, so rise up, stand your ground. Embrace the fury!!
BESO NEGRO hails from the active musical town of Fairfax in Northern California. Their hybrid sound blends vintage roots in gypsy jazz, blues, rock, Latin, and Americana. Rich, juicy flavor in every musical bite!
It's with a lot of love that we bring you Owl Mountain Sessions 006, as it presents one of our most deeply personal influences, '60s rock legend Jesse Colin Young of The Youngbloods. Rich with nostalgia, "Sunlight" had its origins in the sun-drenched 60s but, decades later, it remains one of their fan favorites. Together, Jesse and Owl Mountain bring you "Sunlight" at its most intimate, pared down to its raw essentials--the lush power of Jesse's voice accompanied by the storytelling of his fingerstyle acoustic guitar.
“Sunlight” was the first song Jesse wrote after he and The Youngbloods made the cross-country move from New York City to the small farming town of Point Reyes Station on the Northern California coast. Such a move would be culture shock for most, but Jesse, the band, and their families took inspiration from this change and turned it into nearly five decades of creativity, a creativity which continues today with a wellspring of new compositions from Jesse. At present, he is touring nationwide, selling out venues accompanied by his fresh, phenomenally talented band. Check out the tour schedule for a date near you! www.jessecolinyoung.com
For Session 005, BESO NEGRO detours from their unorthodox Gypsy/Latin/Americana punk sound to rock out in searing primal fashion. Intensity builds with each strum of the opening guitar duet, paving the way for the hard-hitting thump of Ethan Turner’s powerhouse percussion and the mischievous strut of Cheyenne Young’s bass. Eli Carlton-Pearson’s sassy, wayward electric guitar swaggers in, a seductive tale unfolds with Adam Roach’s dynamo vocals, and from there, the sky is the limit. Don’t miss the gloriously deviant adrenaline rush that is “Never Coming Down”!
Gypsy rockers Beso Negro slow the tempo and quiet the riot, returning to Owl Mountain with the introspective ballad waltz "Back To You”. Adam Roach's intimate storytelling has an irresistible vulnerability that immediately draws us into his doomed tale of a lonesome drifter on the lam. The aching sincerity of our protagonist’s voice takes us on a yearnful journey that weaves among soulful slide guitar, shimmering mandolin solos, and lush cello/viola accompaniments, riding the nostalgic groove of classic R&B drum/bass lines toward the elusive light at the end of the tunnel.
There’s a gritty romanticism to Beso Negro’s reconceptualization of the 2004 Tom Waits favorite “Hoist That Rag”. Steeped in dark dreaminess, this version opens smoldering and sparkling like stardust in soot-black night. Restless underdogs unite in raw rebel yell as growling bass and a percussive pulse provide the stage for blazing banjo and nouveau western guitar solos. Layers build upon layers into an electric climax, a lightning storm unfurling across a stormy sea.
"Hoist That Rag" written by Tom Waits & Kathleen Brennan © Jalma Music (ASCAP). Used with permission.
For the “Here I Go Again" foundation four-piece track––drums, bass, and two rhythm guitars––the band recorded and filmed playing together, live. Guitar solos and vocals entered the mix as overdubs, performed once the main four-piece track was laid. Unlike most in-studio recordings, “Here I Go Again” used no click track or editing tricks like chopping, nudging, or time correction.
What makes this studio recording unique? “Obscurity” was performed and recorded live in a single session. For the song’s foundation four-piece track, the band–drums, bass, and two rhythm guitars–was recorded and filmed playing together. Guitar solos and vocals entered the mix as overdubs, performed directly after this main four-piece track was laid. Unlike most in-studio recordings, “Obscurity” used no click track or editing tricks like chopping, nudging, or time correction. The result? You get to enjoy the real deal.