Since forming in Louisville, Ky., in 1998, Second Story Man has carved a robust creative path: two EPs, two full-lengths and a rarities collection, shared stages with Sleater-Kinney, The Gossip and Of Montreal, and tours with Sebadoh and Shipping News. On it's forthcoming self-titled release, the band scrapped all previous material in favor of work focused on massive walls of guitar noise, broad grooves from bassist Jeremy Irvin and new drummer Drew Osborn, and braided vocal harmonies by singer-guitarists Evan Bailey and Carrie Neumayer. Engineered by friend and longtime collaborator Kevin Ratterman (My Morning Jacket, White Reaper, Ray LaMontagne), Second Story Man captures a veteran group's exhilarating, explosive turn.
Gil Scott-Heron's 1971 album Pieces of a Man set a standard for vocal artistry and political awareness that few musicians will ever match. His unique proto-rap vocal style influenced a generation of hip-hop artists, and nowhere is his style more powerful than on the classic "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised." Even though the media – the very entity attacked in this song – has used, reused, and recontextualized the song and its title so many times, the message is so strong that it has become almost impossible to co-opt. Musically, the track created a formula that modern hip-hop would follow for years to come: bare-bones arrangements featuring pounding basslines and stripped-down drumbeats. Although the song features plenty of outdated references to everything from Spiro Agnew and Jim Webb to The Beverly Hillbillies, the force of Scott-Heron's well-directed anger makes the song timeless. More than just a spoken word poet, Scott-Heron was also a uniquely gifted vocalist. On tracks like the reflective "I Think I'll Call It Morning" and the title track, Scott-Heron's voice is complemented perfectly by the soulful keyboards of Brian Jackson.