On June 23rd, 2007 Roadsteamer will celebrate the release of their new album “I’ll Be at Your Funeral” at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston, MA. The band name is most recognizable as the last name of lead singer, and WBCN personality Robby Roadsteamer. The focus of the new record has widened to include the entire band into the writing process, hence shortening the namesake to Roadsteamer.
The passion for this album grew in the wake of some misfortunate events that circled around the release of last year’s “Postcards from the Den of Failure.” Promises to the band were never kept, and they found themselves without a label, and left to their own defenses. It was then that Robby locked the band down to write an album that actually reflected them on a personal level. Not one for comedic purposes based on a character’s slanted viewpoint. What came of it was a concept album about Dinosaurs, the North Shore, true love and the original 8-bit Nintendo.
In keeping with their self-propelled direction, and the bands’ heightened emotional attachment to the music, Robby chose to make this album on his own dollar. He was letting everyone in the band call the shots, and didn’t want to interrupt the balance by turning to the checkbook of someone else. Selling hats at Fenway by day and yelling at WBCN callers by night, Robby saved up enough money to make the album the way it was meant to be.
Merely two weeks before the band was schedule to meet with Kris Smith at Q Division Studios in Somerville, MA, the band had yet another setback caused by internal problems that led them to part ways with former drummer Dan Liacos. With a slot to fill and the clock ticking, Roadsteamer called upon Ray Burgett of Straight To Video to play drums on the new record. Ray has been friends with the band for a while, and created the artwork for the previous two albums, as well as the bands’ website. “We had about 5 practices in 10 days, and then I was in the studio with these guys. It was intense.” said Ray. Both Ray and the band had such an incredible time in the studio that it was decided he would have a permanent home behind the kit.
The recording went much smoother than past experiences, and the entire band took part in making these songs come to life. “I was able to sit back, and just be amazed by how my band was taking these songs I had in my head for so long to the next level. I really appreciate how hard everyone worked and all the great ideas that we were able to capture in the studio.” said Robby. In addition to Nick, Pete, Jay, Robby and Ray all taking part in the creative process, some fellow Boston artists also lent their talents to a few tracks. On a duet entitled “I Hope You Get Ugly in Heaven” Heidi Lee of the Snowleopards brings a much needed female perspective to life after death. Within a little over two weeks all 15 tracks had been recorded and mixed.
With the record completed, Roadsteamer wanted to maintain their DIY approach in the promoting of the album as well. The formation of the “Street-Steamers” street team would allow the fans to participate in the bands’ success, and also allowed them to connect to their audience on a whole new level. Robby had been letting his character evolve from the raspy voice that hid behind sunglasses and wigs so this idea made perfect sense. Their first meeting was an ice cream social on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Quite an unusual setting to find a “hard-rock” band, but they’ve never been conventional to begin with.