You’re not gonna want to sleep on You Me & Apollo. This Colorado band is the next St. Paul & the Broken Bones. RIYL Alabama Shakes with a little Dr. Dog sprinkled in. Or how about Sam Cooke meets the Lumineers?! I tried to go see them play during SXSW but I couldn’t even get in, the line was around the block. No kidding. Do yourself a favor and get on this quick—odds are REAL high you got a hard copy of this, since I basically sent one to everyone I’ve spoken to even once in the last year (except those select few of you trendsetters who prefer downloads)…so I guess that also says if you’re at a radio station who didn’t get a copy of this record (and you don’t like downloads), it’d probably be worth reaching out to say hi and let me know you’re alive! But in that case you could also contact me for a download link, if you’re a radio rep. This music is awesome. See for yourself. And spin this record!!
The band is going on tour in July and August, and I’d love to set you up with them when they’re in your town – you can keep up with their (frequently updated) tour dates on their website here!
This album went for Top 200 Adds on 5/20, and just made its chart debut this past week (CMJ NMR issue #1348), at #184! That’s only the beginning of course, let’s see how much further we can push it from there!
YOU ME & APOLLO
AA Duel Monopoly
You Me & Apollo’s third release, Sweet Honey, opens on a note of worldliness that might seem precocious coming from a 24-year-old. But band founder and songwriter Brent Cowles’s experience belies his tender age. He started playing in bands when he was 14, got married at 18, divorced at 20, and has filled the intervening years with a non-stop regimen of national touring and recording. So when he sings “I learned my lesson young,” on the characteristically raucous “Open Doors,” it’s safe to say he comes by it honestly.
“Cowles is a scrawny, wiry 23-year-old with frizzy hair and a shy countenance, but behind the mic he sounds like a haggard, middle-aged man with struggle and strife in his rear-view mirror.” -Ricardo Baca, The Denver Post
Since the band’s well-received 2011 debut, Cards With Cheats, the unmistakable stamp of Sam Cooke and Otis Redding-style soul has made You Me & Apollo something of a friendly anomaly among the foot-stomping roots-folk renaissance that launched the careers of their Denver colleagues The Lumineers, Nathaniel Rateliff, and Gregory Alan Isakov. Sweet Honey is an ambitious attempt to reconcile these two strains of influence in the service of a restlessly contemporary sound that would fit alongside Brett Dennen, Neil Young, and Ennio Morricone on any playlist. A rich goulash of instrumental flourishes accompanies the well-traveled vocals: sinister trumpet melodies, jaunty Wurlitzers, and harmonies that suggest choirboys with jugs of moonshine smuggled under their robes.
Sweet Honey, the long-awaited follow-up to a self-titled EP released early in 2013, was produced and engineered by Jeff Powell (Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams, Big Star, and Sharon Jones) at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN, where Cowles enlisted the help of long-time You Me & Apollo touring bandmates Tyler Kellogg (drums), Jonathan Alonzo (guitar), Morgan Travis (guitar), and Dave Cole (bass). To help cover the recording costs, the band created a homemade community funding campaign that raised over $20,000. To capture the energy and excitement of a well-constructed live show, honed over the course of 200 shows in a calendar year with bands like Dr. Dog, Devotchka, ZZ Ward and Young the Giant, the record was tracked almost entirely live.
Cowles may have learned his lesson young, but it hasn’t impeded his dogged pursuit of new tricks.
Following Sweet Honey‘s May 9th release, Cowles and his bandmates will embark on an extensive series of tours, appearing at clubs and festivals across the United States.
RIYL: St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Alabama Shakes, Dr. Dog
Start With: 7, 1, 3, 10 FCC 6
Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!