Mike Viola – “Stairway To Paradise” (Stereogum Premiere)
Mike Viola’s voice has a pleasingly worn quality to it, and his music is easy to sink into — it welcomes you in like the cracked leather of your favorite armchair or a dog-eared copy of your favorite book. Viola fronted the Candy Butchers in the late ’90s and early ’00s, but since then, he’s spent a lot of time as a supporting player, producing music for a number of big-name artists and playing guitar in Ryan Adams’ band the Shining. Now, Adams is returning the favor: Viola’s upcoming Stairway To Paradise 7″ was produced and recorded by Adams himself at his Pax-Am studios. The two make a good team, and the title track is proof: a dusty, faintly psychedelic amble through ’70s-style rock with enough earwormy vocal harmonies to last for days. Listen below.