If you like your music on the rocky side, this could be the album for you.
Like a lot of musicians, Nashville-based Andrew Leahey spent lockdown writing and recording songs – so many that ‘American Static’ is broken down into two volumes. Along with his band The Homestead – Dan Holmes on drums, Jay Dmuchowski on guitar and Jon Estes on bass along with the occasional guest appearance from Ariel Posen on slide guitar, Phil Heesan on guitar and keys, Elizabeth Estes on violin and Sadler Vaden on guitar, Leahey (on guitar and lead vocals) has released an album that varies from the pure rock of ‘Shadows That Still Stretch’ and ‘Guilty Man’ to power ballads such as ‘Disco Ball’ with the occasional rocky headbanger like ‘Keep The Car Running’ thrown in for good measure.
At times Leahey and the band channel Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers whilst mixing in a bit of The Byrds’ jangling guitars, The Beatles and even a touch of Davy Jones from The Monkees especially on ‘Somewhere Between’ which is a mix of all of those elements. There’s also the swagger and energy of Bruce Springsteen and early Ryan Adams in there somewhere too – it’s definitely an album that needs to be turned up to eleven.
To quote Leahy ‘This project came together while we were all stuck at home. I certainly felt like a static American, shut indoors for a year. But there’s a real sense of movement to that title, too. Imagine a radio dial that’s being turned, with static occurring between stations. That static is simply the noise you have to hear before you find something better’.
‘American Static Vol 1’ is definitely at the rock end of the Americana spectrum and some may not consider it Americana at all. It’s an album that will divide opinion to what genre it should be filed under but there are probably visitors to this website that like their music on the rocky side, so this might be the album for them. And if that’s the case, then ‘American Static Vol 2’ will be along soon to slake that appetite.
Whilst ‘American Static Vol 1’ may not to be every Americana UK reader’s taste, it’s a good album to play loudly in the car – no nodding off whilst this album is playing full-blast As Leahy sings ‘If the song sounds right, I will keep the car running.’