Heywood Skills For The Long Emergency is the debut record from Ben Heywood. Mr. Heywood is no stranger to music, he’s fronted the long running Los Angeles band Summer Darling and he moonlights / tours in a handful of other bands we’re sure he’d be happy to tell you about. It’s also fun to mention his wife fronts the all girl band Kissing Cousins as well.
Skills is a a concept record of sorts which was recorded in pieces over the last year. It’s a compilation of 8 short stories “set in the West after a state’s war over dwindling natural resources has forced the dissolution of the Union. The mostly nameless protagonists struggle to adjust to a violet and parched countryside where rumor, myth, and xenophobia reign”. Sit down for a beer with Ben and we feel he could explain this in better detail ! The sounds and feel of the music plays an important role in these stories as the lyrics guide you through.
The record serves as a bit of relief for Ben, too, as it began as a way to conquer a long bout of writer’s block that afflicted him after the release of Summer Darling’s 2010 self titled record. Growing up in Northern California as the son of a pastor,obtaining a degree in English and Creative Writing, breaking with the traditional faith, nursing an on-going struggle with alcohol, and years spent on the road have all shaped the creations of Mr. Heywood. Tracks like The Rapture and Spectacular Violence showcase this blender of pop, noise, darkness, and imagination. . . did we mention he’s also trying to complete his 3rd novel ? )
If you’re already a fan, this new batch of songs is reason to celebrate ! If this is brand new to you we hope you’ll give it a listen and enjoy the new sounds.