Admiral Fallow

Monqui Presents

Admiral Fallow

Young Buffalo

Tue, October 9

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

Mississippi Studios

Portland, OR

This event is 21 and over

Admiral Fallow
Admiral Fallow
Admiral Fallow are wide awake, or so it sounds. This is folk plus: folk with extra energy and loads of, as we say, instruments that gives the music added charge and the sort of layered arrangements you might hear on an Arcade Fire album. And people are starting to really go for them, and not just dozy radio presenters, but respected bands, from Elbow (Guy Garvey has been raving about them) to Guillemots (Fyfe Dangerfield has invited them on tour), as well as actual paying punters. Not that Guy Garvey and Fyfe Dangerfield didn't pay to get into their gigs – maybe they did, maybe they didn't. We'd have to check.

Their influences range from Midlake and Low to Tom Waits and Bruce Springsteen, and do you know what? For once we can hear elements of the artists they profess to admire in this group's music. On their Paul Savage-produced debut album, Boots Met My Face, you can indeed hear traces of Springsteen's widescreen rock and Waits's junkshop bricolage of brass, percussion and askew tunefulness. If their song Dead Leg isn't based on In the Neighbourhood from Swordfishtrombones, then we'll eat our hat – incidentally, a replica of the one that Waits wore on the sleeve of The Heart of Saturday Night. Elsewhere, expect from these admirable fellows – and one girl, who takes everything she touches into Beautiful South/Deacon Blue territory – songs about childhood football games made out of felt and plastic (Subbuteo), and one about watching your loved one in bed asleep with their arse in the air (Dead Against Smoking).
Young Buffalo
Young Buffalo
In Vietnamese culture, particularly in that of their farmers, the buffalo is a symbol of quality. The Water Buffalo is a common sight in Vietnam, and to your average Vietnamese citizen, the mention of this noble beast calls to mind the qualities of being hardworking, dedicated and of making the best of every situation that you are faced with.

Young Buffalo had no clue this was the case when they picked their name…

Nevertheless, the symbolism works well for the character of this young Oxford Mississippi based band, consisting of Ben Yarbrough and Jim Barrett. Oxford may not be known widely as a creative hub, but the thoughtful songwriting and multi-instrumental proficiency exhibited by Ben and Jim on their upcoming self-titled EP are prime examples of the artistic diversity that exists in their hometown.As Barrett is quick to point out, Oxford is a "cool mixture of a lot of different kinds of people and it's not necessarily the kind of Mississippi town you would normally imagine."

Born out of the University of Mississippi local music scene, the formation of Young Buffalo took place over several long and sporadic years. Ben and Jim began quietly writing music together when they were teenagers, forming their first band in high school. Although the two maintained their strong friendship, the band went their separate ways for a stint. It was during this time that Barrett self-recorded an EP in the spring of 2009, using the moniker Young Buffalo (a nickname he had for Ben in school). The recording ended up being well received locally, and the duo brought the Young Buffalo project to life.

Ben and Jim each have an eclectic array of interests and personal tastes that, when combined with their impressive musical aptitudes,has resulted in a sound that is both accessible and thoughtfully progressive. This amalgamation of influences is front-and-center on their new Kyle "Slick" Johnson produced EP, which was tracked at his studio in Philadelphia over a whirlwind week of 13-hour days. This EP is a beautiful compilation of two artists finding themselves as musicians and writing partners, and the diversity of the album is refreshing in a world where bands too often commit to one particular sound. From the pysch rock epicness of opener "Baby Demons" to the noise pop of the album's central track "Upstairs" to the more experimental vocal arrangements on "Nature Boy", there is something on the EP that will catch the attention of most discerning music fans, no matter their 'go-to' genre.

Though a central theme of this EP is the sense of urgency and confusion that comes with trying to escape something (as Barrett says "I'm currently living with my parents and this is definitely dealing with that, wanting to get the fuck out"), it was the efficiency of the recording process that the band found most therapeutic. While Yarbrough and Barrett offer a great deal of credit to their production team and the skill of their current bandmates for being able to cut such a quality album in such a short time,their songwriting is clearly at the foundation of this creative step forward for the band.

As Ben and Jim prepare to release their new E.P. this fall, they are seeing Young Buffalo in a more mature light. The band is a more cohesive unit than they have been at any other point in their career, and they are genuinely happy to be playing music together. When asked how the recording of this EP has changed his view of the band's future, Barrett offered this statement: "Two years ago I would've answered like 'we're going to win Grammy's and tour the world'. Now that's just bullshit. I just want to be able to tour and make records, anything else is bonus. I just want an excuse not to be a caterer full time".

Another quality Young Buffalo share with the water buffalo of Vietnamese culture is patience. This EP will serve as a coming out party of sorts for the band, and with the quality it exudes; their patient approach in getting to this point seems well worth the wait.