In the heart of the enchanting music scene of Maine, the quintessential rock ensemble known as Forest City & Friends has once again graced our auditory senses with their latest sonic masterpiece, “Queen of Death Valley.” Bursting forth with an abundance of creativity and artistic vision, this Maine-based collective has released an EP that is nothing short of remarkable, offering an exhilarating journey through a vivid, sonic landscape. The official announcement of “Queen of Death Valley” came on the 15th of September, along with the release of the physical CD, available at all Bull Moose locations and through their website, www.bullmoose.com.
Music enthusiasts from all corners can revel in the anticipation of the EP’s digital release on November 1st. But the most awaited moment of all is the “Forest City & Friends Freakin’ Halloween Show & EP Celebration,” set to unfold at the Urban Farm & Fermentory in Portland, Maine, on October 28th. This spellbinding event promises to be an unforgettable night of live music, featuring the mesmerizing sounds of Zeme Libre, An Overnight Low, Cosmic, and the captivating Torin Muccino.
“Queen of Death Valley” is a testament to Forest City & Friends’ unwavering commitment to their craft. As we delve into this latest offering, it’s evident that the band members were firing on all cylinders, both as individual musicians and a collective unit. Their unmatched ability to harness dynamics elevates their songwriting to stratospheric heights, setting them apart within their genre. At the core of this EP, we discover a magnificent blend of acoustic minstrelsy and electric acid rock, masterfully intertwined to provide the perfect canvas for astonishing vocal performances. Every track on “Queen of Death Valley” is akin to a meticulously cut diamond, showcasing carefully sung harmonies and succinct solos that coalesce to create a record brimming with vibrant organic soundscapes.
The tracks within the EP, from the enchanting, The Eagles-like “Hallowed Ground” to the bass-driven groove of “Truck Moving Job,” the gritty and introspective “Painter,” and the title track “Queen Of Death Valley,” offer searing, melodic, and mind-bending psychedelic odysseys, all harmoniously residing side by side. Forest City & Friends have managed to transport their listeners to another era, not merely as an imitation but as authoritative torchbearers of a sound reminiscent of a bygone era. It’s a testament to their songwriting prowess, impeccable musicianship, brilliant arrangements, and breathtaking vocal performances that leaves no room for doubt – Forest City & Friends were not merely playing around in the studio; they meant business.
The foundation of this musical voyage is rooted in the collaborative genius of Pete Giordano (Twisted Roots, Heart Shaped Rock) and Chris Muccino (Liquid Daydream, Endless Interstate), both revered Maine music veterans. Formed in 2016, Forest City & Friends has now evolved into a dynamic ensemble, with as many as eight members gracing the stage simultaneously. Giordano’s lyrical prowess is nothing short of a marvel, while the musical synergy between him and Muccino is the heart of the band’s creativity.
Notably, “Queen of Death Valley” embarks on a different creative path. A change in direction that Giordano and Muccino had contemplated during the filming of the video for “My Bird” from their previous release, “Sol.” The duo’s interest in exploring a late ’60s and ’70s vibe, with a focus on musical and vocal harmonies, has borne fruit. Giordano describes this evolution, stating, “When we began as a band, we were starting to get to know one another’s style. Now on our third release, I feel we’ve refined that connection with each other. We’ve locked into our strengths better, capturing the sonic essence we sought to find.”
The result is an EP that exudes playfulness and channels the folk energy of iconic bands like America, Jefferson Airplane, and Neil Young. This sentiment is vividly captured in the opening lines of “Hallowed Ground,” where the band’s acoustic guitars strum out the essence of something undeniably catchy. Notably, the title track “Queen of Death Valley” is inspired by the Shoshone Indian legend, a tale of a Queen’s greed leading to the demise of a once-lush valley—a fitting allegory for the EP’s ethereal and captivating journey.
“Queen of Death Valley” encapsulates the very essence of Forest City & Friends, a band with a deep-rooted musical legacy and an unrelenting passion for their craft. This EP marks a new chapter in their artistic evolution, and it’s a chapter that fans and music aficionados alike are sure to treasure. As the global digital release date nears, prepare yourself for a psychedelic voyage that transcends time, and get ready to join the band and their friends on the sonic odyssey of a lifetime.