News for Kyle Craft

NEWS : MON, JUL 25, 2016 at 12:00 PM

Mass Gothic Share New Track “A Run” From ‘Sup Goth’ Digital EP (out 8/5) + Tour w/Kyle Craft

Mass Gothic will release their Sup Goth digital EP on August 5th worldwide through Sub Pop Records (that’s US!). The 5-song effort was recorded in New York this past spring, shortly after the release of Mass Gothic. Where the group’s self-titled debut chronicled the depths of depression, Sup Goth is the resulting catharsis.  The EP is also a collaborative affair between Noel Heroux and partner / bandmate Jessica Zambri, as it is the first Mass Gothic recording the pair have completed together.
 
Says Heroux, “I followed my previously usually-ignored instinct to allow the noise and color in my head to inform a specific, intentional sound as opposed to ‘throwing it all at the wall’ as I’ve done a thousand times before. It’s lyrically loose and conversational, informed by sonic landscape and stream of conscience. Jess approached her vocals similarly, although we hadn’t talked about it prior. We ended up with all these semi-hidden communications between us in the songs.”
 
Brooklyn Magazine says of “A Run“: “It’s expansive and positive and shimmering and anthemic, coming from a brave place populated by two people for whom love really does conquer all (see feature July 25th).”
 
Mass Gothic have also scheduled a short east coast tour in support of the EP and it’s self-titled debut, with label mate Kyle Craft. The trek begins August 9th in Montreal at La Vitrola and ends August 13th in Philadelphia at Boot & Saddle. There will be additional live dates announce soon, but for now… see below. 

[Photo Credit: Shawn Brackbill]

ICYMI, watch Mass Gothic’s recently released, stark visual for the song “Nice Night,” from their self-titled debut, directed by returning Mass Gothic visuals director Addison Post (“Every Night You’ve Got To Save Me”).


Tour Dates
Aug. 09 - Montreal, QC - La Vitrola*
Aug. 10 - Allston, MA - Great Scott*
Aug. 11 - New York, NY - Mercury Lounge*
Aug. 12 - Washington, DC - DC9*
Aug. 13 - Philadelphia, PA - Boot & Saddle*
* w/ Kyle Craft

Go here for up-to-date ticket links.


Posted by Rachel White

NEWS : THU, MAY 19, 2016 at 7:00 AM

Kyle Craft Shares “Eye of a Hurricane” Video + Tour Dates With Fruit Bats Start Tonight

Kyle Craft’s acclaimed debut album Dolls of Highland is only three-ish weeks old and yet he already has his first music video in the can. And I’ll tell you what, this can in particular is worth the watch.  As with the album, the video leaves no room for disappointment.

The saucy new visual was co-directed by Craft and Tyler Bertram, and Craft had this to say of the process: “The video just fell into my lap in a lot of ways.  I wanted something quick with a candid feel to it.  One of my roommates was having his annual drag birthday get together and it seemed like the story would sort of write itself if we just started shooting.  I feel like we approached this in the same way I approached the album… Hit record, see what happens.”


Kyle Craft’s late spring U.S. tour in support of Dolls of Highland resumes tonight, May 19th in San Francisco at the Independent and currently ends May 30th in Salt Lake City, UT at Kilby Court. Along the way, he’ll support Fruit Bats (May19th-25th) and share the stage with label mates Arbor Labor Union (May 29th). Additional live dates will be announced shortly.  (complete dates below.)


Dolls of Highland is currently available on CD / LP / DL / CASS from Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Bandcamp. The limited “Loser” edition on pink with black-swirled vinyl while sold out via the Megamart, is still available at shows on tour and at independent retailers near you (while supplies last). 



Tour Dates

May 19 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent*

May 20 - Los Angeles, CA - Roxy*

May 21 - San Diego, CA - Casbah*

May 22 - Phoenix, AZ - Valley Bar*

May 24 - Austin, TX - Parish*

May 25 - Dallas, TX - Three Links*

May 26 - Shreveport, LA - Bears on Fairfield

May 29 - Denver, CO - Lost Lake Lounge**

May 30 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court

*w/ Fruit Bats

** w/ Arbor Labor Union

Find ticket links in this place.


Posted by Rachel White

NEWS : MON, APR 25, 2016 at 8:00 PM

Listen to Kyle Craft’s ‘Dolls of Highland’ in its entirety via SPIN + Killer Pitchfork 8.0/10 Review

Time for you to not miss hearing all 12 songs from Kyle Craft’s Dolls of Highland; Kyle’s forthcoming Sub Pop debut is streaming now (5 days before release!) exclusively via SPIN.com.
 
SPIN says of Dolls of Highland: “Kyle Craft is a 27-year-old singer/songwriter from Louisiana, who in his past life was either a glam-rock idol or frontman for a power-metal band. His sound is a swampy ’70s boogie that splits the difference between Dr. John and David Bowie…but his voice is a captivating, armor-piercing howl that gives his first album Dolls of Highland its own character, and keeps it from ever feeling explicitly retro. The engrossing LP, recorded in Portland with two members of Sub Pop veterans Helio Sequence helping to mix, has more of an out-of-time quality to it, with the moseying piano shuffle of “Eye of the Hurricane” and the chilling Spectorian balladry of “Lady of the Ark” existing as standards in some alternate-universe classic-rock canon (see feature April 25th).”
 
Meanwhile, Pitchfork, in its excellent (8.1 out of 10!) review of Dolls of Highland, offered this: “…Melds the voodoo-infused mythology of the South with rambunctious glam rock, and Kyle Craft summons you into its world like a carnival barker wooing customers into a funhouse…vivid, immersive storytelling and sharply focused, fat-free songs that have the lived-in feel of 40-year-old FM-radio favorites. And he can dial down the irreverence and deliver the drama on more sobering turns like “Trinidad Beach (Before I Ride)” (where Craft forges a spiritual kinship with another southern Anglophilic misfit, the late Chris Bell of Big Star), and the astounding “Lady of the Ark,” a strummed-out song for a silenced siren that’s launched heavenward atop Spectorized drum crashes and sleigh-bell rattles (8.1/10, review April 25th).”

 
Kyle Craft’s previously announced U.S. tour schedule in support of Dolls of Highland spans April 28th in Seattle, WA at the Sunset through May 30th in Salt Lake City, UT at Kilby Court. There will be additional live dates announced soon. (Current dates below.)



Kyle Craft will release Dolls of Highland on CD / LP / DL / CASS worldwide April 29th through Sub Pop, and is now available for preorder from Sub Pop Mega Mart,iTunesAmazonGoogle Play, and Bandcamp. The limited “Loser” edition on pink with black-swirled vinyl is already sold out via the Megamart, SO… grab it from the artist at shows on tour AND at independent retailers near you (while supplies last).

The twelve track album features the singles “Lady of the Ark,” “Eye of a Hurricane,” “Pentecost,” and “Future Midcity Massacre.”  Dolls of Highland was written, recorded and produced by Craft, mixed by Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence at the Old Jantzen Building in Portland, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.
 

 
What people have said about Kyle Craft:
“A swamp bar jukebox loaded with British glitter and Seventies Southern rock; a crawfish boil aboard ELO’s spacecraft.” [10 New Artists You Need To Know] - Rolling Stone
 
“Craft admits his voice sounds a good deal like Bob Dylan’s, and that his muse has come to him many, many times. Still, “Lady of the Ark” hints that Craft’s music is so full of its own weird singularity that he’s on to something far beyond idol worship.” -  Billboard
 
“Louisiana’s answer to Jobriath; a big hair and a voice shrill enough to pose a threat to amalgam fillings, Craft’s nostalgia for junk shop glam and ‘70s pianopomp reaches teenage peak rampage here.” [“Eye of a Hurricane”] - MOJO
 
““Eye of a Hurricane” starts Dolls.. with a sudden jolt of energy, courtesy of the song’s ragtime piano lick. The keys continue to drive the track, as the distorted guitar works to add a sense of eeriness to the song. All the while, Craft displays the full prowess of his vocal range, hitting high notes that hark back to glam rock vocals of the ’70s.” [“Eye of a Hurricane”] - American Songwriter 
 
““Pentecost” sees Kyle Craft…return to his hometown in Louisiana, haunted by the ghost of a friend who took his own life. Paired with his knack for great melodies, it demonstrates Craft’s emotional power as a songwriter.” [“Pentecost” / “All Songs Considered”] -NPR Music
 
“With inviting, yet imperfect vocals and a jangly guitar melody, “Lady of the Ark” is a sweeping goodbye to a long-term relationship. It’s somehow warm, melodic, and rough at the same time.” [The Weeks Best Tracks”] - FLOOD
 
“Like many artists from the South, Craft has a conflicted relationship with the region’s cultural duality, a topic he tackles on “Lady Of The Ark.” Shrouded in guitars and organ, he caustically wails, “Swing low, low sweet heathen / Swing for the wretch and the rock and roll kid,” a line he says he wrote in response to the “shame, shame thing that ‘church folk’ tend to do so often,” and which doesn’t sit well with Craft. “Roam this earth repeat it / All this sin until this wicked world makes sense in time,” he defiantlygrowls near the song’s end. Craft’s roaming days may be done for now, but “Lady Of The Ark” shows his music as wild-eyed and restless” - [“Lady of the Ark” / “Songs We Love”] -  NPR Music
 
“It’s thrilling. It’s the sort of music that can only come from a somewhat unique musical outlook, a track that instantly sounds like nobody other than Kyle Craft. The huge sound of pounding drums, the almost mariachi handclaps, the frankly bizarre fairground-organ interlude, the lyrics than hint at a complex incestuous web of lives and lies, and all that before you even get to the voice…he has said that listening to Bob Dylan inspired him to embrace his voice and make the most of it. Kyle has suggested he shares atone with Bob, but to our ears it’s more like the love child of Withered Hand and Neutral Milk Hotel’s Jeff Mangum, and that’s a very good, if slightly divisive, place to be.” - For The Rabbits
 
“Hard to believe given the innate sense of pop heritage that blossoms from every ounce of his fruitful, endearingly scorched lead vocal but it wasn’t until Craft stumbled upon a David Bowie that he began to take an interest in music. Lucky for us that he did – debut track ‘Lady Of The Ark’ is astormy, rugged gem, led by one of the most distinctly impressive new voices in the game. A mighty fine introduction.” - Gold Flake Paint


Tour Dates
Apr. 28 - Seattle, WA -  The Sunset
Apr. 29 - Portland, OR - Jackpot Records in store (Solo)
Apr. 29 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir (late)
Apr. 30 - Seattle, WA - Urban Outfitters Capitol Hill
May 05 - Portland, OR - NextNW (Solo)
May 19 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent*
May 20 - Los Angeles, CA - Roxy*
May 21 -San Diego, CA - Casbah*
May 22 - Phoenix, AZ - Valley Bar*
May 24 - Austin, TX - Parish*
May 25 - Dallas, TX - Three Links*
May 26 - Shreveport, LA - Bears on Fairfield
May 29 - Denver, CO - Lost Lake Lounge**
May 30 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court
*w/ Fruit Bats
** w/ Arbor Labor Union


Posted by Rachel White

NEWS : TUE, MAR 29, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Kyle Craft Shares New Track “Eye of a Hurricane” + Spring Tour Dates (via American Songwriter)

You can now listen to Kyle Craft’s “Eye of a Hurricane,” a standout from Dolls of Highland, his forthcoming Sub Pop debut. American Songwriter says of the track: ““Eye of a Hurricane” starts Dolls… with a sudden jolt of energy, courtesy of the song’s ragtime piano lick. The keys continue to drive the track, as the distorted guitar works to add a sense of eeriness to the song. All the while, Craft displays the full prowess of his vocal range, hitting high notes that hark back to glam rock vocals of the ’70s  (see premiere March 29th).”

Rolling Stone also included Kyle Craft in its “10 New Artists You Need To Know” feature, and had this say of his music: “A swamp bar jukebox loaded with British glitter and Seventies Southern rock; a crawfish boil aboard ELO’s spacecraft (see RollingStone.com March 24th).”


Kyle Craft’s just-announced U.S. tour schedule in support of Dolls of Highland spans April 1st in Seattle at the Barboza (for Sub Pop Records 28th Anniversary Party) through May 30th in Salt Lake City, UT at Kilby Court. Highlights for the tour include: album release shows at Seattle’s The Sunset (April 28th) and Portland’s Doug Fir (April 29th); A week-long run supporting Fruit Bats (May 19th-25th); And a show in Denver at Lost Lake Lounge with label mates Arbor Labor Union (May 29th). You’ll find a complete list of dates below.



Dolls of Highland comes out on CD / LP / DL / CASS worldwide April 29th through Sub Pop, and is now available for preorder from Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Bandcamp. LP preorders from megamart.subpop.com will receive the Loser edition on  pink vinyl with black swirl (while supplies last).

Dolls of Highland was written, recorded and produced by Craft, mixed by Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence at the Old Jantzen Building in Portland, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.


What “The People” have said about Kyle Craft:
“Craft admits his voice sounds a good deal like Bob Dylan’s, and that his muse has come to him many, many times. Still, “Lady of the Ark” hints that Craft’s music is so full of its own weird singularity that he’s on to something far beyond idol worship.” -  Billboard

 
““Pentecost” sees Kyle Craft…return to his hometown in Louisiana, haunted by the ghost of a friend who took his own life. Paired with his knack for great melodies, it demonstrates Craft’s emotional power as a songwriter.” [“Pentecost” / “All Songs Considered”] -NPR Music
 
“With inviting, yet imperfect vocals and a jangly guitar melody, “Lady of the Ark” is a sweeping goodbye to a long-term relationship. It’s somehow warm, melodic, and rough at the same time.” [The Weeks Best Tracks”] - FLOOD

“Like many artists from the South, Craft has a conflicted relationship with the region’s cultural duality, a topic he tackles on “Lady Of The Ark.” Shrouded in guitars and organ, he caustically wails, “Swing low, low sweet heathen / Swing for the wretch and the rock and roll kid,” a line he says he wrote in response to the “shame, shame thing that ‘church folk’ tend to do so often,” and which doesn’t sit well with Craft. “Roam this earth repeat it / All this sin until this wicked world makes sense in time,” he defiantly growls
 near the song’s end. Craft’s roaming days may be done for now, but “Lady Of The Ark” shows his music as wild-eyed and restless” - [“Lady of the Ark” / “Songs We Love”] - NPR Music
 


Tour Dates
Apr. 01 - Seattle, WA - The Crocodile
Apr. 28 - Seattle, WA -  The Sunset
Apr. 29 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir
May 19 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent*
May 20 - Los Angeles, CA - Roxy*
May 21 - San Diego, CA - Casbah*
May 22 - Phoenix, AZ - Valley Bar*
May 24 - Austin, TX - Parish*
May 25 - Dallas, TX - Three Links*
May 26 - Shreveport, LA - Bears on Fairfield
May 29 - Denver, CO - Lost Lake Lounge**
May 30 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court
*w/ Fruit Bats
** w/ Arbor Labor Union

Ticket links are right over here.


Posted by Rachel White

NEWS : FRI, MAR 4, 2016 at 8:00 AM

Listen to Kyle Craft’s “Pentecost” from Dolls of Highland (via NPR Music)

Kyle Craft’s “Pentecost” is the latest offering from Dolls of Highland, his forthcoming Sub Pop debut.

NPR Music’s “All Songs Considered” had this to say of the track, “Pentecost” sees Kyle Craft…return to his hometown in Louisiana, haunted by the ghost of a friend who took his own life. Paired with his knack for great melodies, it demonstrates Craft’s emotional power as a songwriter (see premiere via “New Mix” March 1st).”

NPR Music also discussed Craft’s ‘Lady of the Ark” for its “Songs We Love” feature this week. They said of the track, “Like many artists from the South, Craft has a conflicted relationship with the region’s cultural duality, a topic he tackles on “Lady Of The Ark.” Shrouded in guitars and organ, he caustically wails, “Swing low, low sweet heathen / Swing for the wretch and the rock and roll kid,” a line he says he wrote in response to the “shame, shame thing that ‘church folk’ tend to do so often,” and which doesn’t sit well with Craft. “Roam this earth repeat it / All this sin until this wicked world makes sense in time,” he defiantly growls near the song’s end. Craft’s roaming days may be done for now, but “Lady Of The Ark” shows his music as wild-eyed and restless (“Songs We Love” feature March 2nd).”


Kyle Craft will release Dolls of Highland, his label debut, on CD / LP / DL / CASS worldwide April 29th through Sub Pop, and preorder is now available from Sub Pop Mega MartiTunesAmazonGoogle Play, and Bandcamp. LP preorders from megamart.subpop.com will receive the Loser edition on pink vinyl with black swirl.

Dolls of Highland was written, recorded and produced by Craft, mixed by Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence at the Old Jantzen Building in Portland, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.


About Kyle Craft:

Kyle Craft grew up in a tiny Louisiana town on the banks of the Mississippi, where he spent most of his time catching alligators and rattlesnakes instead of playing football or picking up the guitar. He’s not the born product of a musical family, and bands never came through town–it was only a chance trip to K-Mart that gave him his first album, a David Bowie hits compilation that helped inspire him eventually to channel his innate feral energy into songwriting and rock and roll.

That self-made talent drives every note of Dolls of Highland, Craft’s exhilarating, fearless solo debut. “This album is the dark corner of a bar,” he says. “It’s that feeling at the end of the night when you’re confronted with ‘now what?’”

Craft knows the feeling well–Dolls began to take shape when everything he took for granted was suddenly over, including an eight-year relationship. “All of a sudden I was left with just me for the first time in my adult life,” he says. He decided to get himself and the music he’d been working on far away from the ghosts of his home in Shreveport, Louisiana, to make a new life for himself in Portland, Oregon, living under a friend’s pool table while he demoed new songs and started to tackle his own question about what came next.

Dolls of Highland crashes open with “Eye of a Hurricane,” a whirlwind of ragtime piano and Craft’s dynamic, enthralling vocals. He calls it a “jealous song,” stirred up by the memories of an ill-fated crush and a drama of “weird little connections, a spider web of what the fuck?”

The swinging, resonant “Lady of the Ark” is also tied up in that web, “a very incestuous song,” says Craft. “It’s about these messed up relationships, maybe involving me, maybe revolving around me.” Most of the characters and atmospheres on the album come from in and around Shreveport, where Craft briefly returned while recording the album for an intensely productive reckoning with his past. He stayed in a friend’s laundry room in the Highland neighborhood, where he recorded the whole album in two months on a home studio rig. “I dedicated the album to Shreveport and called it Dolls of Highland for all the girls and ghosts in town who influenced it so strongly.”

Craft eventually returned to Portland where Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence helped refine and mix the album to move it from its DIY beginnings to a more fully realized work. Craft played most of the instruments on the album, but the recorded songs transmit the power of his live performance. “It’s just letting go,” says Craft. “I think it’s just all about feeling it in your chest.”

And then there’s Craft’s unforgettable voice–”I’m fully aware that I have a very abrasive, very loud voice, but Bob Dylan is the one that taught me to embrace that,” says Craft. “I stray away from him from time to time, but always come back. I don’t want to come off as antique, but I also don’t want to be afraid of paying homage to the stuff I’ve always loved.” With those influences as inspiration, Craft’s talent and singular creativity move the conversation into new and unpredictable places.

And no question, this album is very much about moving forward. “After everything fell apart, it didn’t take very long for me to learn who I was and what I should be doing,” says Craft, who is walking out on the other side with Dolls of Highland.


What ‘The People’ have said about Kyle Craft:

“Craft admits his voice sounds a good deal like Bob Dylan’s, and that his muse has come to him many, many times. Still, “Lady of the Ark” hints that Craft’s music is so full of its own weird singularity that he’s on to something far beyond idol worship.” -  Billboard

“With inviting, yet imperfect vocals and a jangly guitar melody, “Lady of the Ark” is a sweeping goodbye to a long-term relationship. It’s somehow warm, melodic, and rough at the same time.” [The Weeks Best Tracks”] - FLOOD

“It’s thrilling. It’s the sort of music that can only come from a somewhat unique musical outlook, a track that instantly sounds like nobody other than Kyle Craft. The huge sound of pounding drums, the almost mariachi handclaps, the frankly bizarre fairground-organ interlude, the lyrics than hint at a complex incestuous web of lives and lies, and all that before you even get to the voice…he has said that listening to Bob Dylan inspired him to embrace his voice and make the most of it. Kyle has suggested he shares a tone with Bob, but to our ears it’s more like the love child of Withered Hand and Neutral Milk Hotel’s Jeff Mangum, and that’s a very good, if slightly divisive, place to be.” - For The Rabbits

“Hard to believe given the innate sense of pop heritage that blossoms from every ounce of his fruitful, endearingly scorched lead vocal but it wasn’t until Craft stumbled upon a David Bowie that he began to take an interest in music. Lucky for us that he did – debut track ‘Lady Of The Ark’ is a stormy, rugged gem, led by one of the most distinctly impressive new voices in the game. A mighty fine introduction.” - Gold Flake Paint


Posted by Rachel White

NEWS : THU, FEB 4, 2016 at 9:30 AM

We Signed Kyle Craft! Hear “Lady of the Ark” from His Debut LP ‘Dolls of Highland’ (out 4/29)

We couldn’t be more pleased to announce that singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Kyle Craft will release his label debut, Dolls of Highland, worldwide April 29th on Sub Pop Records.  The twelve track album features singles “Lady of the Ark,” “Eye of the Hurricane,” “Future Midcity Massacre,” and “Black Mary”.  

You can listen to lead track “Lady of the Ark” right here, right now.
 
Billboard says of Kyle Craft and “Lady of the Ark”: 
“Craft admits his voice sounds a good deal like Bob Dylan’s, and that his muse has come to him many, many times. Still, “Lady of the Ark” hints that Craft’s music is so full of its own weird singularity that he’s on to something far beyond idol worship (see news story Thursday, February 4th).”


Kyle Craft has scheduled a hometown show on Sunday, February 7th at Mississippi Studios in Portland, Oregon. There will be additional tour dates announced shortly.


Dolls of Highland will be available on CD / LP / DL / CASS, and you can preorder it now from Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Bandcamp. LP preorders from megamart.subpop.com will receive the “Loser” edition on pink vinyl with black swirl. 

The album was written, recorded and produced by Craft, mixed by Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence at the Old Jantzen Building in Portland, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.


Dolls of Highland 
Tracklisting
1. Eye of a Hurricane
2. Balmorhea
3. Berlin
4. Lady of the Ark
5. Gloom Girl
6. Trinidad Beach (Before I Ride)
7. Future Midcity Massacre
8. Black Mary
9. Pentecost
10. Dolls of Highland
11. Jane Beat the Reaper
12. Three Candles


About Kyle Craft:
Kyle Craft grew up in a tiny Louisiana town on the banks of the Mississippi, where he spent most of his time catching alligators and rattlesnakes instead of playing football or picking up the guitar. He’s not the born product of a musical family, and bands never came through town–it was only a chance trip to K-Mart that gave him his first album, a David Bowie hits compilation that helped inspire him eventually to channel his innate feral energy into songwriting and rock and roll.
 
That self-made talent drives every note of Dolls of Highland, Craft’s exhilarating, fearless solo debut. “This album is the dark corner of a bar,” he says. “It’s that feeling at the end of the night when you’re confronted with ‘now what?’
 
Craft knows the feeling well–Dolls began to take shape when everything he took for granted was suddenly over, including an eight-year relationship. “All of a sudden I was left with just me for the first time in my adult life,” he says. He decided to get himself and the music he’d been working on far away from the ghosts of his home in Shreveport, Louisiana, to make a new life for himself in Portland, Oregon, living under a friend’s pool table while he demoed new songs and started to tackle his own question about what came next.
 
Dolls of Highland crashes open with “Eye of a Hurricane,” a whirlwind of ragtime piano and Craft’s dynamic, enthralling vocals. He calls it a “jealous song,” stirred up by the memories of an ill-fated crush and a drama of “weird little connections, a spider web of what the fuck?”
 
The swinging, resonant “Lady of the Ark” is also tied up in that web, “a very incestuous song,” says Craft. “It’s about these messed up relationships, maybe involving me, maybe revolving around me.” Most of the characters and atmospheres on the album come from in and around Shreveport, where Craft briefly returned while recording the album for an intensely productive reckoning with his past. He stayed in a friend’s laundry room in the Highland neighborhood, where he recorded the whole album in two months on a home studio rig. “I dedicated the album to Shreveport and called it Dolls of Highland for all the girls and ghosts in town who influenced it so strongly.”
 
Craft eventually returned to Portland where Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel of The Helio Sequence helped refine and mix the album to move it from its DIY beginnings to a more fully realized work. Craft played most of the instruments on the album, but the recorded songs transmit the power of his live performance. “It’s just letting go,” says Craft. “I think it’s just all about feeling it in your chest.”
 
And then there’s Craft’s unforgettable voice–”I’m fully aware that I have a very abrasive, very loud voice, but Bob Dylan is the one that taught me to embrace that,” says Craft. “
I stray away from him from time to time, but always come back. I don’t want to come off as antique, but I also don’t want to be afraid of paying homage to the stuff I’ve always loved.” With those influences as inspiration, Craft’s talent and singular creativity move the conversation into new and unpredictable places.
 
And no question, this album is very much about moving forward. “After everything fell apart, it didn’t take very long for me to learn who I was and what I should be doing,” says Craft, who is walking out on the other side with Dolls of Highland.


Posted by Rachel White