Boston’s Eddie Japan combines ‘60s baroque pop influences with the less restrained tendencies of ‘80s alternative guitar bands to create a soaring, dramatic sound that stands apart from the beats and banjos of today’s indie scene. When singer/songwriter David Santos set out in 2007 to form a new band, he was hearing trumpet as a lead instrument. With the help of multi-instrumentalist Chris Barrett (Kingsley Flood) on trumpet and keyboards, Santos assembled a band of top-notch Boston players that also includes Eric Brosius (Tribe) on guitar, Chuck Membrino on bass, Bart LoPiccolo on guitar, and Chuck Ferreira on drums.
Following their 2009 debut EP Four By Six, a collection of songs that showcased the elegant fringes and melancholic corners of rock, Eddie Japan’s upcoming EP, Modern Desperation Part 1, is scheduled for release in November 2012. Modern Desperation, Part 1 is a lush, moody, and musically big throwback of a record that squares off against the times, stylistically and thematically. From the Blue Note-inspired album art to the grandiose arrangements, this collection is a cinematic journey into the heart of darkness.
The EP opener, a barn burner titled “You Will Find Me Dead in My Comfort Zone," finds the singer lamenting the state of modern indie rock (“An indie band with a 24-syllable name”) and name-dropping Morrissey over a huge backbeat and prominent Wurlitzer organ. “Let Me Bleed” juxtaposes jangly guitars and “bah bah bah” backing vocals with lyrics about bodily injury. The existential yowl of “The Bridges I Have Burned” channels Jacques Brel via Scott Walker, and “This Married Life” is a devilish, brass-infused romp through the master bedroom: “The slights and the fights don’t mean a thing / when all you’re wearing is your wedding ring.” The EP closer, "A Town Called Nowhere," with a haunting string arrangement, is an epic soundtrack to a mid-life crisis. Timpani swell, trumpets blare, and the siren-like backing vocals draw the singer to disillusionment and despair.
Modern Desperation, Part 1 was recorded at Q Division Studios with Rafi Sofer (Juliana Hatfield, Kingsley Flood, Faces on Film, Melissa Ferrick) and with the band’s guitar player, Eric Brosius. Joining them in the studio on backing vocals is Terri Brosius (Tribe), and The Desperate Strings. Modern Desperation, Part 2 will be released in 2013.