Nobody rocks as hard as CF and the Solar Motel Band. This is a killer set.
Released: 30th April 2021
This release is available for pre order and has a scheduled release date of 30th April 2021. In the event of any delays we will try to keep this page updated. It is listed at a special discounted pre order price that will revert to full price during the week of release. Please note, If you make a purchase that includes a pre-order item together with an in-stock item in the same order, we will typically hold your box until all items are in stock before we ship. You can read more about our shipping policies here.
On February 27, 2018, Chris Forsyth & The Solar Motel Band (comprised, in this iteration, of long-time SMB bassist Peter Kerlin and Kerlin’s Sunwatchers battery mate Jason Robira on drums) were close to wrapping up an 18-date tour of the EU and UK with a two-set, one hour and 45 minute show at Cafe OTO, London’s premier venue for adventurous music. Highlights of that show are included in this live release, RARE DREAMS: SOLAR LIVE 2.27.18, recorded before a packed house seated mere feet from the band’s amplifiers. These recordings reveal a band that is clearly in high spirits and high gear, operating with an expansive, improvisatory fleetness that allows them to stretch the material to almost ludicrous extremes and then let it to snap back to some semblance of form while somehow seemingly never wasting a note, a beat, a gesture. The four tracks included here comprise material culled from (at the time) the two most recent Solar Motel Band records DREAMING IN THE NON-DREAM (No Quarter, 2017) and THE RARITY OF EXPERIENCE (No Quarter, 2016) plus covers of two Neil Young songs - the autobiographical plaint “Don’t Be Denied,” lyrically relocated by Forsyth from Young's Canada and Hollywood to the more personally relevant geography of New Jersey and Philadelphia, and encore “Barstool Blues” (they’d run out of material to play, so another Neil Young tune it was). While the covers establish Forsyth’s basis, serving as an homage to Young and the quest for self-realization, the long tracks’ jams showcase the trance-inducing power of the Solar Motel Band as a performing entity. Kerlin’s gymnastically propulsive bass playing locks in with Robira’s relentless thud, each serving as counterpoint to some of the most blistering guitar work of Forsyth’s career. The telepathically dynamic interplay of the trio explodes with whiplash intensity across the 15-plus minute takes of “Dreaming In The Non-Dream” and “The First 10 Minutes of Cocksucker Blues,” each song’s structure serving as a framework for extended lava flows of energy. At one point late in the “Dreaming” jam, Forsyth unplugs the jack from his guitar, dragging it across the strings and lashing the body of his single-pickup “parts" Esquire, producing a desiccated barrage of percussive static. This is music beyond the notes; it is an expression of pure electric ecstasy, a simultaneous negation and celebration of rock music’s (indeed all musics’) essential energy. In contrast to the expansive but meticulously detailed guitar arrangements of his recordings, here Forsyth’s unhinged live guitar sound positively roars with a barely restrained vocal intensity, from liquid melodic lines to gnarled blasts of free jazz scree, to pulsating lead/rhythm vamping. I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing this band up close for a number of years now and I can authoritatively attest that while every show is different, when the SMB is running down a steep hill at full speed (as on these takes), they become a single leaderless vibrating sonic tornado, possibly beyond the control and logic of the players themselves, picking up listeners along the way and taking them along for the ride straight into a solar furnace of sound. - Jerome Onfront, Philadelphia.
Chris Forsyth: guitar, vocal Peter Kerlin: bass guitar Jason Robira: drums
Recorded live at Cafe OTO, London on February 27, 2018 Multi-track recording by James Dunn Mixed by Jeff Zeigler Mastered by James Plotkin
OTO chalkboard text/drawing by Zara Miller and Patrick Dahn Band photo by Mark Dershowitz Layout by D. Norsen
In the UK we offer Royal Mail Tracked 24/48®, Click & Collect at the shop and Free Shipping on orders over £85.
Worldwide we ship with International Business Parcel Tracked and DHL.
+ Full information on our shipping options can be read here. + There is a shipping calculator in the basket to give you a clear guide of our rates and available services based on your location.
Drift is the award-winning independent record shop in Totnes, Devon. We have been gliding through life to the beat of our own drum since the mid-nineties and online since 2010. You can read all about us here. Come meet us, or have us ship you something in the post. Nominated 'Best Independent Retailer' at the Music Week Awards in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. Nominated "Indie Champions" at the 2015 AIM Awards.
Our favourite tracks here at the shop. Updated weekly.