This exclusive interview with Sean Sullivan
- aka Sean Bones
- provides a taste of the icky sticky, white boy grooves he and his band dispensed at Piano's last month. He also takes reggae fans inside the recording process of his soon to be released album Rings, his motivations for recording the album, and his overall goals for the project.
Sean Bones Buzzards Boy is one of an evolving artist setting out to test new waters only to find himself weathering a stylistic and emotional sea change. As with most second records, theres much to prove, but in the case of Buzzards Boy, Sean Bones transcends a varied stylistic past to reveal himself as an intriguing songwriter capable of truth and sonic spells.
On Buzzards Boy, Sean and his bandmates hooked up with a producer for the first time. Shane Stoneback was sought out for his uncanny recording methods (oil cans, toys amps) and his enthusiasm for the demos he was absorbing between his other name-brand projects (Fucked Up, Sleigh Bells, Cults) The sessions were brief and at some point during the week Bones resolved to taking on the rest of the project alone. Traveling between rehearsal spaces, bedrooms and eventually to the West Coast, he built an awesome second record from the foundation laid through this partnership.
The island hes trawling this time is darker and more lush. Tracks are swathed in reverby surf guitars and loose percussion. Its easy to imagine hearing this album out doors, at night. A full listen reveals a wide range of influences digested into something wholly Bones own. Tell Me Again is a folky harmonium piece played over what sounds like the Miami Sound Machine. Four Dub explores open space and urgency. The sublime Black Gold starts with a scruffy hip hop beat until giving way to another one of those swoony boy-girl ballads that hes good at.
At the heart of Buzzards Boy is a romantic young man, worried about the world and checking himself for imagined damage. Somewhere in the storm came a renewed sense of purpose. Fittingly, the exuberant lead single Here Now was written last. Backed by Fools Golds Garrett Ray and Lewis Pesacov, the song brims with energy as an ecstatic Bones proclaims, Im here now, hold it down!. Whether hes here to remind himself or the rest of us doesnt matter he track is his most confident and inspiring to date.
Bones will be releasing a limited number of physical, handmade vinyl copies of Here Now 7 inch records in February 2012, and a run of Buzzards Boy LPs the following May. Tours are slated for the Spring thatll see him play both with a band and on his own where he chops up his own music, lets us in on the process and basically hosts an off kilter dance party. Theres also talk of another record in the can too. Considering his propensity for change and changing medias, itll be interesting to watch this story play out.