When the glaciers of the last ice age finally receded, they exposed a dirty, scarred, rutted, wet and lifeless moonscape with geological features we might just have recognized as the bones of the Puget Sound, the Cascades and the Olympics. Over the course of the following 15,000 years, life as we know it here slowly established itself- carefully nurturing and building the shallow lens of soil that all of the Northwest depends on.
Just 60 years after the founding of Seattle, our grandfather walked around as a kid, kicking stones and cans down the alleys of Alki. As we write from 2017, the city isn’t even 170 years old. Those of us who’ve lived most of our lives here, have been here for a significant percentage of the entire existence of the city.
The concept of “rock bottom” is that an addict must sink and sink into their addiction until finally, at some unfathomably terrible point, they have an epiphany and begin the slow process of building their soil back and allowing life to recolonize them again. Where is this point in relation to our national addictions to greed, racism, fear, unhealthy tribalism, and consumerism?
When we see a child acting out, we see their unpleasant behavior as a reflection of some unmet need that they have that is not being fulfilled. Most of the time, the unmet need is love, connection, and a sense of purpose. How can we make it clear that their behavior is not acceptable, but not punish them by withholding the very things that cause their disconnection in the first place?
So we are young. We are rubbery and we are good at learning. Maybe holding so dearly to the anxiety that everything is going to hell isn’t serving us well anymore. Maybe reconnecting -to ourselves, to nature, is the best thing we can do to face those who draw their power from disconnection.
For us, making music is critical. It’s not an option. It is the primary source of connection. It is a journal of growth, a complex puzzle whose pieces only reveal themselves over long periods of time and over great distances.
So for now, the latest puzzle piece reveals itself to us as Shallow Lenses. A new name to refer to the music that we've created over the past year, and in collaboration with our lifelong friends Faustine Hudson and Navid Eliot. For us, this change allows us to acknowledge our place within the context of a world that has a long way to go, but also to celebrate the work we do together and get excited about the growth that this collaboration makes possible.
On November 11th, we'll be releasing War Poems, a collection of six songs from a larger body of work recorded throughout 2016 and mastered in the Summer of 2017. We'll be performing these new songs among many others at The Sunset Tavern, and are honored to be joined by Sons of Rainier and Bryan John Appleby for the evening.
See you there,
Mikey and Matty