Kevin Robinson, who most of us know as the drummin'/singin'/guitarin' guy half of Viva Voce, offered "organic" when asked what might best describe he and wife Anita's new project, Blue Giant. And this here Cut of the Day, "Blue Sunshine," makes a pretty solid argument for his claim.
Gone are the electronic blips—and even the lovely dovey lyrics, for the most part—that many of us came to associate with Viva Voce's sound. What's still here is a healthy dose of psychedelia, easy breezy melodies, Kevin's enthusiasm and Anita's wicked guitar playing. So what's new? Multi-instrumentalist Seth Lorinczi (ex-Quails, the Golden Bears) and drummer Evan Railton (ex-Swords Project), for two. Stomping, ramshackle rhythms, a decidedly country vibe and more room for jamtasticness, for three more.
"Blue Sunshine," is one of five tracks featured on a debut EP fans will be able to get their grubby little hands on at the band's first show this Friday (details below). It's also a testament to the freewheeling nature the Robinsons have fully embraced with Blue Giant. Percussion rattles and shakes all throughout; the guitar is bent and racing all about the frets with a Southern-hot distortion; phasery effects wash in and out, adding a fresh space-rock element to all those downhome rhythms; and a wild harmonica blasts in between Kevin and Anita's dreamy harmonies.
To put it simply, Blue Giant, and this track in particular, feels like freedom. Take it from Kevin himself: "When you write a song that will be performed and recorded with absolutely no restrictions, it's a mental shift. I think the new Blue Giant songs reflect that." Indeed they do.
Blue Giant plays its first show Friday, June 20, with the Shaky Hands and Lackthereof at the Wonder Ballroom. 9 pm. $10 advance, $12 day of show (includes EP). All ages.
Photo by Vivian Johnson.