The Band Explains: Brother Oliver - 'Brother Oliver' (Album)

We had a chat with South Carolina folk-rockers Brother Oliver about their new self titled album that came out earlier this month.

What are the ideas and themes behind the album?
We’ve always let our albums sort of write themselves, so it’s interesting to look at the finished product and really see what message we’ve crafted and what image we’re conveying. Our new Brother Oliver record seems to be about the struggles and questions of the common man. More specifically, it’s about finding hope and contentment in the electro-techno chaos of the modern day. We went back to our roots a bit with this album lyrically, while at the same time opening some new doors as far as the sound of the record. It’s a little heavier than our previous records, but it matches the weight of the message.

How would you describe it to someone who has never listened to you before?
Our desire is that it would be described as an honest sound. But in more traditional terms, we describe the music as “psychedelic folk-rock” or “wild-west rock and roll”. While we were writing the record I envisioned it being used as the soundtrack to a major blockbuster wild-west action film, perhaps directed by Quentin Tarantino or something crazy like that. That was kind of the mental picture I had in mind going into production and it carried through.

Where was it recorded? Any behind the scenes studio stories?
This album, like our previous records, was self-produced. We recorded it in our apartment studio. It’s basically a recording studio with a bathroom and a bed attached in the back. We had the album mastered by John Baldwin in Nashville who did an excellent job wrapping it all up.

We basically live in our studio, so there’s always stories that go along with that. When we were recording the opening track on the album “I Rely On Everything” I (Andrew) got deathly sick but we had to stay on schedule. I wrapped myself in a comforter for the day (because I was shivering cold) and ran the session.

On Track three “Maybe” you can hear birds chirping at the beginning and end of the song. Those birds were recorded on the back deck of the studio apartment, the same spot where the song was written and recorded.

What are the plans for the band for the rest of the year?
We have quite a few more shows scheduled over the next few months all around the Southeast. We’re looking forward to hitting some more new cities and meeting new faces along the way. We’re filming a music video next month, which we’re really excited about. There’s no rest for the wicked, so we’re going to keep the content rolling.

Photo by Austin Witthuhn