Monday, October 26, 2009

The Da Vincis release See You Tonight via Olympic Records TOMORROW!

Check out -- The Da Vincis - "Standing In Line" via Fluxblog

"The three chaps behind The Da Vincis are an unbelievable talent..." -- Americana UK

From the opening chords of “Vermont”, it is immediately apparent that The Da Vincis are something a little bit different. What is this? A rock band? No. A jazz combo? Maybe. The hum of a peculiar reed instrument is introduced into the mix, supplying melody to this mini-overture of the trio’s debut release, See You Tonight. But this is merely a peek through the door. Should the listener’s curiosity be perked, stepping inside will find him or her on a sea of sound-scapes in an almost childlike utopia; simultaneously complex and utterly simple, yet always retaining a sense of elegance and beauty.

The fact that no member of The Da Vincis is older than seventeen might shed some light on this innocent nature of their music, drawing attention to the mundane aspects of life, often overlooked through the eyes of an adult whose focus is obscured by money, career, relationships, and insecurity. Instead of heartache, pain, and mistrust, The Da Vincis prefer to give an insightful perspective on slightly more positive everyday events, all the while translating a feeling of sentiment for the present – almost as if they know their youth won’t last forever and are trying to hold onto it while it’s still there. Inspired as much by classic jazz and bossa nova as modern indie pop music, The Da Vincis’ sound sits somewhere between Astrud Gilberto and Of Montreal. The distinctive, earnest baritone of lead singer/keyboardist Andrew Burke channels both the great jazz and pop crooners of the 1930’s and 40’s and modern ones like Morrissey or Zach Condon. With twelve years of training in classical piano, including five summers at the prestigious Interlochen Center for the Arts, Burke hones a unique mastery of his craft rarely found in the pop genre. Singer/drummer Gavin Fields’ slightly off-kilter approach to his instrument yields a charm reminiscent of Ringo Starr, although his musical contribution can equally be found in his vocal performances on “Nickels and Dimes” and “John Wayne”, as well as his ukulele playing on “Friend Request”. Peyton Randolph sums up the trio on bass guitar, providing a solid foundation that is musical as it is modest and tasteful. Randolph is also responsible for playing the kalimba in “50’s Film”, an instrument traditionally used in African tribal music.

Forming in the unlikely location of Jackson, Mississippi during their freshman year of high school, the three first became acquainted while working on a school production of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Upon realizing they shared a love for the same music, Fields and Randolph invited Burke to join their existing band, and they soon wrote their first few songs as a quartet under the tentative band name, ‘The Da Vincis’. Within months the band was introduced to label/recording studio owner, Misha Hercules, and began recording demos of their material.

After a surprise lineup change when their guitar player suddenly left the band, the remaining three found themselves at a crossroads, having to decide whether to replace their lost member or go on as a trio without guitar – a more unconventional approach. Not wanting to dilute the chemistry he had seen among the three of them, Hercules recommended they go the latter route. Under his guidance, the three continued working under a new approach, completely tearing down the concept of a ‘band’ and the restraints of what a band could do in a live setting. They spent the next eighteen months writing, recording, and re-recording what is now See You Tonight, and signed to Hercules’ Mississippi-based label, Olympic Records, early in 2009. Now beginning their senior year in high school, The Da Vincis are just getting started. Watch out.

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