A Three Year Journey Overseas Finds Tod A Collaborating with Musicians from India, Pakistan, Turkey and Israel The Golden Hour In Stores April 2008
Bloodshot Records announces a multi-album, international agreement with Firewater, continuing the label’s mission to champion roots music that defies pigeonholes. Firewater brings their admirable work ethic and bullet-proof reputation to Bloodshot along with a sound unlike any other on the label - or elsewhere, for that matter. Historically, Firewater has cut a visionary swath through genres, and today Bloodshot proudly trucks to the Middle and Far East for this dance. The Golden Hour is roots music, but from a quite different tree.
In 2005, Firewater’s Tod A embarked on what would become a 3-year sabbatical through the Middle East, the Indian Subcontinent and South East Asia. As the leader of a loose collective that has included a few dozen of the best players in rock today, he has always loved the act of collaboration, incorporating klezmer, ska, cabaret and gypsy elements into his songs in ways that were far ahead of his time. Bands like Gogol Bordello and Beirut owe a debt to his early adventurousness. In fact, early Firewater members are now part of Gogol Bordello and Balkan Beat Box, and drummer Tamir Muskat of Balkan Beat Box produced and played on the album. As former singer and bassist for New
York no wave descendents Cop Shoot Cop, Tod’s background is firmly planted in the punk rock movement, but Firewater explores ideas and genres only hinted at in his former band. “I always thought World Punk summed it up pretty nicely,” he told Gear Wire, “We are inspired by music from all over the globe, but it’s always filtered through a punk rock sensibility.”
The journey he undertook to make The Golden Hour would challenge him creatively in ways he couldn’t have imagined in the planning stages. “I traveled overland starting in Delhi, India, through the Thar desert, then through Rajasthan, onward through the Punjab, then into Pakistan,” Tod recounted. “I had originally planned to continue overland through Afghanistan, Iran and Turkey, ending in Istanbul. Unfortunately I was forced to end my trip at the Khyber Pass on the Afghan border, due to general ill health and the unnerving likelihood of kidnapping.” Recording with a single microphone and a laptop in his pack, he captured performances with a vast array of musicians across India and Pakistan - and eventually Turkey and Israel. Writing songs about the world he left behind in the US (This Is My Life) and politics (Borneo, Hey Clown), his acerbic wit
Shines on The Golden Hour, elucidating both the beauty and the absurdity of his world. Tod tells the story of The Golden Hour in a short video Including footage from his travels; watch it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eyn-OSDQp0. He chronicled his experiences on his fascinating travel blog, Postcards From The Other Side of the World, which can be found here: http://postcards.blogs.com/ .
Firewater is scheduled to appear at SXSW in March 2008, will tour throughout Europe in April, and launch a national US tour in May. The Golden
Hour is slated for April 2008 release.