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Slackshop, Musical Trio

Slackshop CD

The three Louisville boys who make up Slackshop have been honing their skills as a trio for some time now. Simultaneous writing, recording, and conception has resulted in a diverse sound that ranges from Replacements-esque rock numbers to Middle East-influenced mood pieces. In other words, this is an American band, and thus a melting pot of music.

Meandering lyrics, tight arrangements, and familiarity that transcends derivation imbue Slackshop. The songs resonate like old friends lost, found, and new again. You can’t help but know, when you hear singer/guitar player William Bartley’s raspy voice, smiling to the accompaniment of Glenn Watts on bass guitar and Jerry McBroom on the trap set, that these boys are straight from Kentucky.

Watts’ bass riffs punch holes in the sparse ambience like cello strings snapping beneath the bow, and McBroom thumps out rhythms on the skins that sound like an orchestra of gym balls slapping on a tongue-and-groove floor. Bartley can find melodies with his voice and guitar and twist them like dancing. The band weaves the perfect bed to complement each arrangement.

While recording Faint Praise and Happy Accidents, Slackshop shared studios with some big names in the music business (Beastie Boys, Lauryn Hill, Pavement, and Robbie Robertson). The band members incorporated tracks from their home studios to bring spontaneity to the tracks, then enlisted some talented friends for the mixing: veteran engineers Mark Richardson (Smashing Pumpkins, Emmylou Harris, Hole) and Tim Stroh (Robbie Robertson, Smashmouth, Timothy Leary). The result is ambition realized for these three Midwesterners.

—adapted from the album liner notes

Program 218

This week we will meet contemporary artist, Mark Williamson; Scott Erbes from the Speed Art Museum takes us to Cave Hill Cemetery for "Art Surrounds Us"; and we will hear the music of Slackshop as they perform live in our studio. (#218)

Program 307

Revisit musical selections by: Slackshop; Jakeleg; Dan Gediman; and Juggernaut Jug Band. (#307)


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