MP3 Candyland Riots! - Orange Sash and the President of the Galaxy
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13 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Psychedelic, POP: Quirky
ORANGE SASH AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE GALAXY is the latest offering from
Los Angeles based, Candyland Riots!
Candyland Riots! is the brainchild of singer/songwriter/guitarist, Jordan
Lee. Raised in Troy, Ohio, Jordan played with members of Hawthorne Heights
and Times New Viking before making a move to Los Angeles for schooling.
"The day I moved to L.A.. " says Jordan, "I met Mikael Karlsson in a hostel
we were staying at. He was attending the same school I was and wanted to
record someone. We started recording lo-fi's in his bedroom on a
borrowed four track, and now we're making movies in forms of music! We're
to the point now, I write the songs, but we just want to make the music
feel.., so we do it all together, but on better sound equipment."
The band's new album comes as a concept album, "At the time, everyone I
knew constantly pointed out my faults, while also telling me that is what
they loved about me; so I wrote a super album to proclaim that I am a
selfish misanthrope from Ohio," quips Lee. "I started reading The
Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and saw myself as a Galaxy President.
I just wanted to give my side. I'm just an introvert who should have
lived in the 1930's movie era... While writing, Jordan became close
friends with the legendary actress, Shelley Winters(almost 60 years his
senior) and would bring her up-to-date recordings almost daily of the
songs for her opinion. ..We were best friends, and she always wanted to
hear about our orchestra. I read Oscar Wilde and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
I like silent movies, and Golden Age black and whites. Clark Gable
inspires me. That's what I want--to be as close to them as I can in the
21st century. I can't travel back in time, but I can invent a life with
them when everything gets sad", says Lee.
Depressing? Perhaps, but throw in lush, art-psychedelia influences and
catchy-as-hell choruses and ORANGE SASH AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE GALAXY illustrates the ability to craft melodies that keep the listener guessing, while forcing them to hum along and sometimes daydream with every listen. With hits like, "You're Contemporary Art" the band stands up for the last remaining gentleman. In "Ice Jets" they build a winding, and
ever-changing passionate masterpiece that comes to life in images of the
internal human body and the need to save it. "Thora (or hope for the
empire)" is an anthem declaration of adoration for a Muse. Candyland
Riots! even tackle their own bi-polar tendencies, and assure us that at
some point both sides have to come together to present a loving person
underneath in "Our Molecules Have Finally Come Together". Maybe the most
heart-warming song comes towards the end. "Sleep, No More!" is inspired
by the sci-fi Invasion of the Body Snatchers and questions love over life.
An Article From the Troy Daily News:
'Ear candy' has local flavor
By Val Hunt
HOLLYWOOD, Calif. - Taking risks took Jordan Lee to the West Coast and has helped him premiere the debut album of his band, Candyland Riots!
Lee describes "Orange Sash and the President of the Galaxy" as an imaginative exploration of sounds and emotions.
"It's kind of like ear candy," he said. But Lee's auditory treat comes wrapped in a shiny foil story that started here.
The Troy native moved to Hollywood to attend the Musician's Institute and said he took his experiences from this small town in hopes to make it big time.
Lee said music surrounded him his whole life. His mother played the organ and his father sang in church. Lee would often accompany his parents in these early jam sessions.
"(My mom) knew then I would either be a politician or a musician," Lee said.
Lee eventually developed his own unique taste in music that encompasses a plethora of melodies from "old, old country" to funky indie tunes. Lee said he also was influenced in his early years by fellow musically gifted Trojan Micah Carli.
"He was the cool kid who took his guitar to school and just played all the time," Lee reminisced.
He said a few open-minded teachers at Troy High School encouraged Lee, class of 1999, to develop his talents, allowing him to complete assignments on staff lines rather than college-rule paper.
At the Musician's Institute, Lee said his songcraft course was among the most difficult, but it was in that class he realized his potential.
"My instructor loved my lyrics, but he said they would never make it mainstream," Lee said. "He was tough, but he always said he liked my lyrics as they were. I guess I thought I can write songs because he thinks I can."
Finding his place..
Along with the confidence he found in his professors, Lee said one of the biggest influences in his songwriting was moving across the country and not knowing anybody. Lee told how he spent most of his friendless time upon his arrival in California in record stores and listening at home alone.
"When you're really lonely and sad, you figure out who you really are, what you are," Lee said. "You get to a point where you get so sad that putting it into words just won't do it anymore."
That's when Lee formed a band out of what he called "necessity."
"I figured a music career was what I was born to do," he said.
Lee teamed up with MI classmate Mikael Karlsson, who offered to record Lee and has been working with him ever since playing dual roles of guitarist and production engineer. Lee cites him as "the most driving force" in Candyland Riots!
"Even though our personalities are polar opposite, we work well together," Lee said. Karlsson had a differing opinion of what kind of music would make the band work, and Lee said Karlsson didn't like the ideas he pitched.
Lee found an advocate for his new style in drummer Hale Savard. He convinced the band to take the chance allowing Lee to have creative freedom and "see what happens."
The result has been the "new psychedellic" style of rock Lee described as having an "aristocratic" feel. The CD, which opens with the quote, "Mr. President, welcome to Troy, Ohio," has a certain surreal melodic style this writer believes sounds like a blend of Smashing Pumpkins and Modest Mouse.
"It's like Clark Gable, 1930s-style psychedellic music," Lee said. "The whole album is about being trapped in the wrong era. Like an old soul in a new world, but you come to discover you're still as crazy as anyone."
Sources of inspiration..
Lee cites his grandmother as a source of his love for the '30s. Another influence was a woman he befriended in California around the time his own grandmother died - Shelly Winters. Lee said he sought her influence for notes on 1930s culture he uses in his lyrics. Lee said the former Hollywood actress encouraged him and his "orchestra" to continue making music. The "stubborn Jewish side of her" never let Lee or his band accept defeat.
After Winters' death early this year, Lee has continued to spread the message of Candyland Riots!
"Packaging is important to get music's message across," Lee said. "We have to present a package that's visually appealing. I have to get people's attention so they'll want to buy it. We threw everything that was us into this package."
But is Lee worried about whether his music will make it mainstream? For now, Lee said he is comfortable with simply getting the word out about Candyland Riots! and its unique sound.
"Indie music is the coolest form of art," he said. "It's music, it's poetry, it's kids breaking all the rules."
The gift of music..
His goal is for his audience to be intellectually stimulated.
"I want to listen to something that makes my brain wander," Lee said. "I want to hear something that's entertaining."
He also said he hopes his music sparks discussion. "I want someone to say, 'That was amazing. Let's talk about it.'"
For Lee, the most rewarding part is the vicarious interaction that takes place between himself and his audience. He said all the risks he took and experiences he's had constitute the finished product he wants to share with the world.
"Impressing others and making them share my feeling is worth (the effort)," Lee said. "Recording music is a gift because it's keeping something alive - a moment in time you can never recreate."
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