Minneapolis producer Ryan Olson and Zack Coulter and Adam Hurlburt of Tanlines pals Solid Gold are at the center of Gayngs, but a couple dozen other folks orbit the trio on the debut album Relayted. Olson started the project in his Minnesota bedroom, but stepped outside and into Wisconsin’s April Base studio where he threaded North Carolina BTW Megafaun, the Rosebuds’ Ivan Howard, Justin Vernon (who appears on 9 of the 11 tracks), and Bon Iver’s Mike Noyce into the mix. Back in Minneapolis, he continued layering with rapper P.O.S., jazz saxophonist Michael Lewis (currently in Andrew Bird’s band), members of Lookbook, slide guitarist Shön Troth (also of Solid Gold), and various other hands, voices, and devices. What you might not expect is the sharply produced collection’s chilly, rich, soft-rock and R&B, a sound that’s earned more than one Bone Thugs reference. Gayngs list only 10cc’s “I’m Not In Love” in their MySpace “Sounds Like” field and cover 10cc spin-off Godley & Creme’s “Cry” on Relayted, but there are dozens of other echoes (from Primitive Radio Gods to Yeasayer to Kenny G) that surface and expand across these 55 minutes. Check out opener “The Gaudy Side of Town,” a song that swells to seven minutes on Relayted, but gets a trimming here. It’s OK to think about George Michael while listening to Zach Coulter’s croon. And note Justin Vernon’s background atmospherics (and guitar stylings).
The song also includes soprano sax, Rhodes, slap bass, keyboards, beatbox, guitar, drums, and an “accidental phone call.” The next track on the collection, “The Walker,” makes smooth use of a chainsaw and guns. Overall it’s a dense album that deserves close listening on repeat…
Relayted is out 5/11 via Jagjaguwar. There are two shows Minneapolis shows on 5/14: One at 5PM and one at 10PM, both at First Avenue.
Here’s a porny (NSFW) video blip: