If you’re in the mood for new music that energizes and enthralls, look for Quilt’s new “Plaza.” The third studio album from the 4-member Indie/psych/folk band, their new release shimmers and shines with enough substance to score with both fans and newbies.
Opening track “Passersby” boasts Anna Fox Rochinski’s lilting, uplifting vocals, splendid guitar touches and the band’s dreamy, atmospheric vibe you’re sure to love.
Another standout? From the opening guitar notes of “O’Connor’s Barn,” it’s a song that will have you hooked. A great arrangement and fun track with solid drums and vocals that canters at just the right clip, it’s perfect for earbuds or a drive in the country. Have a listen:
Also noteworthy: guitarist Shane Butler’s Shins-like “Eliot St.” Showcasing great songwriting, touches of synth, an enticing chorus and Butler’s captivating vocal style, it’s another dreamy landscape painted by this ever-capable band.
Amidst their recent shows at Austin’s SXSW, Portland Radio Project had a chance to visit with the band members about the new album and their upcoming Portland appearance.
PRP: We love the new album – how’d it come about?
“It all fell into place when we brought songs to the table, some more finished than others,” says lead singer Anna Fox Rochinski. “We worked on them in Atlanta, Georgia and Ruby, New York over 2 different sessions,” she adds
PRP: You’ll be performing at Mississippi Studios soon in Portland, a lovely venue with great acoustics! Have you played there before?
Quilt: “Yeah, we have, in 2014. Last time I got smacked in the eye with a hi hat stand during load-in and had to have my friend who lives in Portland bring me copious amounts of concealer because my eye area was all bruised and swollen. But it was a great show regardless!”
“We’re excited for this upcoming show because we made some nice projections to show behind us.”
PRP: The different instrumental touches (flute, etc) on some of the new tracks are quite nice! Are all instruments heard on the new album played by Quilt?
Quilt: “They are not! We had friends come in and play flute and harp, and our friend Simon Hanes arranged the strings and assembled a quartet.”
PRP: We love the opening track “Passersby” as well as “Island”; can you talk a little bit about them?
Rochinski: “Thank you! Both of these songs were written several years ago when I still lived in Boston. I used to play them around town as a solo act and would sometimes have live harp and flute accompany me.”
“My Quilt bandmates expressed that they liked these songs a lot and wanted to use them in the pool of songs for Plaza. It was nice having them be complete and taking the time to flesh out Passersby with lush arrangements, while leaving Your Island as a relatively simple ditty.”
PRP: It’s still early in the year…what’s the band hoping the year might bring? Any concerts, festivals or venues you’re especially looking forward to?
Quilt: “Looking forward to playing Europe in May- we love it there.”
Rochinski met Butler as a teenager, forming the nucleus of the band in 2008. From Boston, the band relocated to New York in 2013.
Drummer John Andrews later replaced Taylor McVay, and talented bass player Keven Lareau was added when he came on-board for their 2014 tour.
The band released their self-titled debut in 2011 to positive acclaim, and “Held in Splendor” in January of 2014 – both on the Mexican Summer label and both portending good things to come. Quilt are: Anna Fox Rochinski (vocals, guitar); Shane Butler (vocals, guiar); Keven Lareau (vocals, bass) and John Andrews (vocals, drums).
On the new album, have a listen for the alluring retro vibe of “Your Island,” which PRP just added to our playlist. Here, the band strikes it rich with a warm, acoustic guitar intro, shimmery vocals, even a flute solo. Tropical daydreams, anyone?
“Plaza” closes out with a buoyant and rollicking romper, “Own Ways.” You’ll likely agree, from start-to-finish “Plaza” engages and satisfies.
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