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The Submarines

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Location: East Los Angeles, California
John Dragonetti and Blake Hazard

After touring behind their debut, Declare a New State, in the US and Europe, The Submarines were ready to make an album that felt good not only to record but to play in a live setting. “Our first album was hugely cathartic for us to make, dealing with a breakup and getting out the sorrow, but we’ve been ready to freak out and have a lot more fun this time around. We’re thankful not to have to make that record again, to be in a better place,” says Hazard. Honeysuckle Weeks also marks the duo’s first album made collaboratively; Declare a New State was written separately during a breakup and recorded upon their reunion.

The record is as diverse in theme as it is in sound. The time-warped “1940” conjures the things that go bump! in the night, while “The Wake Up Song” portrays a couple’s start to the day--the act of preparing to leave the house, setting the stage for relationship dynamics. “You, Me and the Bourgeoisie” addresses the need for social consciousness, while acknowledging the hypocrisies inherent in our own contemporary lives. The most prevalent theme in the record, however, is the garden. Whether it’s thorns wrapped around the heart in “The Thorny Thicket” or plants taking back the city in “Fern Beard,” the leafy tangle surrounding The Submarines’ studio made its way into the songs with a fresh energy. The days when the garden grew while the album blossomed were The Submarines’ Honeysuckle Weeks.

None Listed
Honeysuckle Weeks - 2008
Declare a New State! - 2007
Free MP3 or Video: None Listed
Sonically, Honeysuckle Weeks is a glorious collage of The Submarines’ wide-ranging influences, from old-school dub (most evident in tracks like “1940” and “Fern Beard”) to intricately layered electronica (as in the psychedelic- classical “Submarine Symphonika” and “The Thorny Thicket”) to vintage pop (as on “Swimming Pool” and the Santaria-inspired “Xavia”). While some songs started with a traditional guitar-in-hand approach, many began with instrumental tracks composed by Dragonetti, which Hazard then completed with words and melody, drawing on each of the their musical strengths. Dragonetti--who masterminded the recording--says, “The glitch is enjoyable, but so are the Beatles, so I just try to follow what the song calls for.” The duo was also joined on a number of tracks by the phenomenal Section Quartet.

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