Frank Iero and the Patience (formerly stylized as frnkiero and the cellabration) are out on the road in support of Parachutes, their sophomore release via BMG/Vagrant Records (Oct. 2016). Iero, best known from his previous band My Chemical Romance, has been putting out some tremendous music since MCR dissolved.
Parachutes is an “enjoyably volatile” record, complete with fiery rock beats, buzzing guitar riffs, and raw songwriting (Rock Sound Magazine). Co-produced by the legendary Ross Robinson (Slipknot, Korn, The Cure, Deftones) and Steve Evetts (The Used, Saves The Day, Senses Fail), the album is heartfelt, while still maintaining its punk rock identity. Overall, “Iero has made a grand statement with Parachutes that should not be overlooked” (Alternative Press).
Directly from Iero’s site is his statement about creating Parachutes, “hi, you might not know me but my name is frank iero, and i have recently come to the realization that you can not kill me. many have tried, and at times have bled me well. but here i am…limping yet still standing. new jersey’s rock and roll cockroach.
i have learned a great deal in my 34 years and 361days of living… and i am proud to say i am still learning. i made a record that comes out tomorrow with some people i truly look up to and admire. it was a journey that at times i both loved and hated, but am forever most grateful for. i wrote songs forged in the depths of my soul and i would love to be able to say i will begin playing them live for you all very soon. however life, as it sometimes does, has decided to send me down another path. so instead i must present my work, Parachutes; a record i truly believe defines me as an artist, from afar. i made this record for the ones i love, some of which i am lucky enough to hold tightly (with my good arm) on tomorrow’s release day while we listen to the songs i toiled so hard over. my only request is that you do the same, wherever you are. crank your stereo to thirteen with someone you care for, listen, and allow yourself to feel. (we tend to not give ourselves that luxury often enough.)
as i said, you may not know me, but my name is frank iero and i made these songs for you… and i believe that after these twelve tracks have echoed against your heart you will finally really know me. and deep down i suppose thats all we can ever really hope for.
forever true, xofrnk” (http://frank-iero.com)
Dave Hause and the Mermaid opened the intimate show at Club Stage AE. For Dave Hause the American dream is a broken promise, a childhood ideal that has been shattered by the reality of the past two decades. On the musician’s second solo album, Devour, Hause scours the foundation of that crumbled dream in an attempt to discover how everything we believed growing up could have turned out so differently. The album, initially written to become the third record from Hause’s rock band The Loved Ones, follows his 2011 solo debut Resolutions, a disc that allowed the musician to understand his potential as his own artist.
As Hause, a Philadelphia native, began penning new music for a new album from The Loved Ones, it became clear that the group, who had taken a break after their second album, had stalled. These songs, however, which showcased a clear thematic journey, were meant to be vocalized by Hause and over the past few years he transformed them into Devour. Hause solidified the album’s sequence before even going into the studio, aiming to craft a narrative arc that drove the album from its dark, heavy first half into a lighter, more hopeful tone. A thematic line of melody runs through the songs, reflecting the overarching ideas in the music itself. The disc explores the heartbreak of shattered childhood promises of a better world and concludes with optimistic hope.
“Devour is about that inherent American appetite,” Hause says. “It’s in all the songs in some degree. There’s a reason why Tony Soprano became such a huge American icon – he’s this guy with this insane appetite for women and food and power. I think for the American public to latch onto a figure like that says something. Some of the positive things about America come from that as well, but there’s a real sense of reckoning that comes from devouring everything in front of you. Is it ever enough?”
The rock songs, tinged with folk and punk tones, are firmly rooted in Hause’s own upbringing and the sensibility that comes from growing up in a blue collar neighborhood driven by the lingering anticipation of upward mobility. In the lyrics, the fulcrum around which the album revolves, Hause grapples with this working class ideal and the fact that America’s recent shifts have caused it to no longer fit. From “The Great Depression,” which centers on the unfulfilled promises laid out in the Reagan-era ‘80s, to the more specific-minded relationships of “Father’s Son,” Devour comes to terms with the loss of youthful innocence in a rapidly evolving world.
“I wanted to shine a light back on what was going on,” Hause says. “It was a topic that was close to me and I wanted to write about it. In the end, it leaves you with the idea that if you have music and love you may be able to save yourself. It’s going to be alright. That simple John Lennon concept of all you need is love. That’s how I wrote myself out of the dark and the music begs the listener to come take that risk as well.”
Once Hause had the track sequence and overall narrative in place he enlisted producer Andrew Alekel along with musician and co-producer Mitchell Townsend. The producers helped Hause collect the right musicians to build the songs in the best way possible, including My Morning Jacket keyboardist Bo Koster, Social Distortion drummer David Hidalgo Jr. and bassist Bob Thomson. Frightened Rabbit’s Scott Hutchison, Alkaline Trio’s Matt Skiba and The Watson Twins also appear on several tracks. Hause and his crew recorded the album over several weeks from mid-February to mid-March at Grandmaster Recorders LTD. in Hollywood, CA, focusing on giving each song the right tone while maintaining an overall musical aesthetic that helps tie the lyrical themes together.
“It was this group effort,” Hause says. “A lot of trust went into letting Andrew and Mitch be the architects of the record. I trusted that we would get in there and they would know who was right for the music. They wanted to bring these people together in this great studio to get a record that was greater than the sum of its parts. I’m glad I trusted them because it was great to work with everyone there.”
For the musician, who has toured with Social Distortion, The Gaslight Anthem, Bouncing Souls and Chuck Ragan since launching his solo career, Devour is a cathartic release, both sonically and lyrically. Hause recently relocated to California and is committed to pursing the music he feels best reflects him individually. The journey on the album, the search for the light at the end of the tunnel, mirrors his own trek. The record closes with the delicate introspection of “Benediction,” a song that pulls lyrical lines from all the tracks that precede it. After all the ruined promises and the culminating disappointments of the world, Hause ends the album with the sentiment of possibility. “It’s love my friend in the end that can save us tonight,” he sings. “So are you in?”(davehause.com).
All photos © 2017 DanielleMedIate