Doors: 8pm - Show: 9pm / 18+
Tickets: $10 at Door ($15 Under 21)
Rustic Overtones formed in Portland, ME, hometown to each of them. Members of this seven-piece outfit are guitarist and lead vocalist Dave Gutter, drummer Tony McNaboe, trombonist Dave Noyes, baritone saxophonist Jason Ward, bassist Jon Roods, alto saxophonist Ryan Zoidis, and Spencer Albee on keyboards and piano.
Roods and Gutter began performing together first, in a family basement. They later added the rest of the group, all friends from high school, and became what is Rustic Overtones. Local gigs earned them a fan base that expanded as the band began to travel, appearing at close to 200 shows some years.
Rustic Overtones’ “The New Way Out” is the first album of entirely brand new music from the band in over eight years. Recorded in their own makeshift studio between November of 2007 and September of 2009 it’s the bands fifth full length studio LP and first without longtime keyboard player Spencer Albee who left the group shortly after production began to form Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia. He was replaced during the writing and recording of the record by Nigel Hall (Soulive, Lettuce, Robert Randolph) who handles the keyboard duties on TNWO.
The one time property of Clive Davis’ Arista Records, Rustic Overtones were caught in the middle of one of the biggest industry shake-ups in music history when Davis was asked to step down from his own label of 25+ years. The band then managed to get out of their deal with Arista Records while retaining the rights to their Master recordings, which were released a year later by classic indie label Tommy Boy Records. After two years of more than 260 shows a year, a widely successful radio campaign and a hit on Canada’s “Much Music”, Tommy Boy Records were bought out by Warner Bros. Music and the Overtones again found themselves without a home.
The band took a knee, a deep breath and a much needed hiatus between 2002 and 2006 while individual members formed new bands (Paranoid Social Club, Seekonk) and others took touring gigs with the likes of Soulive and Ray Lamontagne before returning in 2007 with a triumphant concert in Portland Maine’s Monument square in front of over 6,000 fans. Three months after that, Rustic Overtones began work on a new record.. Two years later “The New Way Out” is finally complete and standing behind it is a smarter, stronger and, in every way, more refined band than the one who carried the same name in 2001.
On TNWO there are many departures from the traditional approaches the band and it’s fans are accustomed to. With the absence of Albee, a four and a half year hiatus and a maturing musical climate within the band, there was a very strong sense that Rustic Overtones needed to be destroyed in order to rebuild. After not having approached the task of a new record in almost seven years, and with bassist Jon Roods serving as resident engineer, the band worked without creative limitation or time constraints for the first time in their career. This can often be a curse but The Overtones worked feverishly and with focus. What was once an auto mechanic garage became a remodeled and soundproofed retreat where no labels were waiting for a “hit” or a “single” and seven creative minds were able to make their music in it’s most honest and pure form. Essentially, Rustic Overtones was for the first time making a record which was motivated by nothing but a love for creation, expression and each other.
In addition to the six remaining original members, the band called upon 15-20 of their peers from Portland, Maine’s widely slept on and prolific music community to play anything from additional horns and strings to timpanis, steel drums and back-up vocals, giving the the record a strong sense of the community and character of the very scene that they’ve worn on their sleeve for 15 years.
Day in and day out, Gutter wrote lyrics to his guitar changes in the driveway, Jon recorded his own bass between drum takes, and trombonist Dave Noyes took the rhythm bed’s and scored them masterfully into rich orchestral backdrops for Zoidis, Ward and oftentimes half the city of Portland’s musicians to record with the band. Over and over, an idea was born and was patiently brought to fruition. One by one, with careful deliberation, and called finished no sooner and no later than it was meant to be. For the first time there were no high stakes, no “big chance”. No pressures or distractions, Nothing. Absolutely nothing to lose… It had all been destroyed in the fire..
What stands in its place is the sound of a band who after 15 years are still finding that their best work lies ahead of them. In September of 2009 a new record, a new era, and a new way out had all dawned on the same day.
Band Website: http://therusticovertones.com