Blitzen Trapper live in concert with opening support from Laney Jones – outdoors on the Railroad Stage weather permitting
“A sprawling, sumptuous testament to Weird America” —NPR
“Missing Tom Petty? He lives on in Blitzen Trapper‘s Wild and Reckless, an accomplished slice of classic rock that unabashedly sounds like Mr. Petty singing a Springsteen song with the Heartbreakers’ California guitars and a harmonica intro from Neil Young.” — The New York Times
Singer-songwriters have been tackling existential questions about life and death since time immemorial… or at least the 1960s. But when it came to Blitzen Trapper’s newest album, Holy Smokes Future Jokes, front man Eric Earley looked beyond mere existence—or even the end of it—to contend with grander cosmic explorations: namely, the intermediate period between a person’s separate lives on earth, “and what it means to escape the cycle of birth and rebirth,” he explains.
Weighty stuff, to say the least. But then again, Blitzen Trapper has never been the type of band to just skim the surface. Over the course of 20 years and ten full-length albums, the Portland, Oregon-hailing act, with singer, songwriter and guitarist Earley firmly at the helm, has crafted a singular catalog of songs—sometimes wrapped in impressionistic imagery and scruffy, singalong melodies (the fan favorite “Furr,” for just one example), and other times rendered in sharp-focus, needlepoint detail and imbued with driving, electrified rhythms (“Cadillac Road,” about a depressed and deserted mill town in the Oregon mountains where Earley’s father once worked, comes to mind here)— that celebrate the human experience in all its triumph and tragedy.
As for how each new album comes into focus, well, that’s more a matter of immediate inspiration than some long-conceived plan. “The records are a chronicle of my own journey, to be honest—snapshots of where I am at that time,” Earley says. “I don’t know that that’s any way to have a career, but for me it’s a cathartic way of documenting where my head’s at.”
“It’s not quite folk, it has hints of pop perhaps, and it rocks like no other.”—NO DEPRESSION
“She questions philosophy with both her lyrics and her music with a sophistication usually reserved for veterans of the industry.” —ELMORE MAGAZINE
“Right from the beginning, nothing is typical…. ‘Firewall’ with its goose-honking saxophones and drunken melodic line…is definitely the instrumental highlight and places Jones in the lineage of gothic experimenters like [Tom] Waits.” —PASTE MAGAZINE
Amazingly, Laney Jones’ music career started as something of an accident. She picked up the guitar and began writing songs during college as a respite from the demanding academic curriculum working on an international business degree. Her aptitude as a singer and songwriter was instant. She soon found herself immersed in the roots scene as a rising young talent.