Louisiana family band makes tunes to charm Faulkner
Indie chamber rock is an apt tag to describe Baton Rouge, La., family outfit England in 1819.
The trio — dad Liam Callaway and sons Dan and Andrew — simplify baroque phrasing down to bare indie-style picking and keyboard and lay down vocals that are ever so muted. The effect is a hookup between indie rock and ambient music that suggests meaning through sound more than lyrics.
After releasing the band’s second album, Alma (which is a woman’s name and the Spanish word for soul, for you Tennessee Williams geeks), England in 1819 has spent much of 2012 touring small rooms through the South, Midwest and East Coast.
Now the band comes to Denton on Tuesday to play the Old Dirty Basement at J&J’s Pizza on the Square.
It’ll be a good space to hear the family affair trot out conservatory training — composing for Andrew, French horn for Dan — translated through careful music that has no bombast, but thankfully skips the indulgent self-awareness that plagues many an indie startup.
Liam Callaway brings the chops of a tavern musician to the trio. He was the son of a Southern gentleman and traveling musician, and inherited the trade himself. Together, father and sons produce songs that are sweet to the ears and tempting for the soul.
The band has plans to release an EP in early 2013.
Sounds like: Robert Gomez (Gomez and England in 1819 share a publicist, Team Clermont), Burt Bacharach and Team Tomb wrote some songs after a Saturday afternoon screening of Leaving Los Vegas. Craving and hunger are key parts of the human condition, and sometimes, the best way to express it is to build a keening guitar crescendo over a sad piano.
Details: England in 1819 plays at 9 p.m. Tuesday at J&J’s, 118 W. Oak St. The band shares the stage with local band the Treelines. Cover is to be determined.
— Lucinda Breeding