I love to get word of musicians trying their hand at the kids music world for the first time -- so much promise and uncertainty. So when self-described "indie rock Texpatriate" Monte Holman (he lives in Kansas City at the moment) sent me a copy of his debut album recorded as Spring Bees and cited folks like Dolly Parton, Neutral Milk Hotel, and Joao Gilberto as musical reference points, I was eager to hear it, to see what came out of it.
Almost as cool as hearing new music from new bands is seeing that they've got their act together, and in this case, Holman already had his debut video lined up.
The first video from Spring Bees' self-titled album, "Used to Be," is a celebration of a love that will last a long, long, looooong time. The lyrics suggest a series of lifetimes that the singer has lived through caring for someone else, suggesting a love that survives reincarnation. But because those lifetimes feature, say, giraffes and alligators, it gives the weighty concept a much lighter feel. The video was created by animator Cody Ground, who used stop-motion animation featuring what I like to think of as all those "zoo in a tube" tiny plastic animals you're stepping on when you're not stepping on your kids' Legos.
I'm guessing that the band name is inspired by the name of Monte's daughter (which starts with the letter "B"), and unsurprisingly given that track above, there's a strong feeling of love suffusing the entire album. And those references above? Totally earned. (Just wait 'til you hear "Burp," which feels like a missing track from Getz/Gilberto.) The album definitely will give you warm and fuzzy (and fuzzed out) indie rock feelings, but not in a too-cool-for-school way.
The self-titled debut is out April 21, but in the meantime, I'm happy to world-premiere this video and help get Spring Bees' music slowly out into the world. I'm eager to see (and hear) what will happen.
Spring Bees - "Used To Be" [Vimeo]