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About His Name is Alive
HIS NAME IS ALIVE
His Name Is Alive – romantic, mysterious, beautiful. Like dating a star-crossed werewolf behind your parents’ back. They’ve been called “Michigan’s Finest” and “the band that gave Tom Cruise a nervous breakdown!!” What began as lo-fi basement experiments [acoustic guitar + loops + girl] in 1990 eventually went on to sell 100,000 records with famed British label 4AD.
His Name Is Alive is a band that is constantly redefining itself and its sonic standards. Detrola is louder, stranger, sexier, weirder, more complicated, more suggestive, and even more violent than could be expected from HNIA. In many ways, this album reminds us of the records Prince cut back when he was alone in the studio with a crazy head full of good ideas. This collection of summer songs and late night confessions are filled with unexpected noises and has a critical eye fixated on clouds, unicorns, creepy-crawls, harps, drownings, and saxophones. HNIA songs are filled with sweet dreams and nightmarish visions lined with references to pop culture history, art, and politics.
Strikingly diverse in sound, texture, and genre these 11 songs concisely reprise the full range of sonic quality and stylistic jumps found within the entire HNIA catalog!!! “Get Your Curse On” has a loose, earthy feel sort of like Carole King finally getting around to that sequel to Tapestry, although singer Andy FM may sound more like Michigan’s own Karen Carpenter. While “In My Dreams,” with its synth-pop beeps and catchy chorus, has some serious stanzas that carry a heavier message than would appear. More intimate tracks like “Your Bones” reclaim HNIA’s dream pop roots and escort the listener to scary places where “Angels cost a little more”, “We don’t tell no one,” and “Not everyone gets a warning.”
FOR FANS OF:
Animal Collective, Deerhoof, Rufus Wainwright, Carol King, 4AD, Vanity Six, Neil Young, the Carpenters, Gwendolyn Brooks, Drexciya, Yohji Yamamoto, Pharoah Sanders, twin sisters, singer-songwriter syndrome, Detroit Dance parties, and old His Name is Alive.
Originally working closely with 4AD founder Ivo Watts-Russell [This Mortal Coil], each new HNIA album set a new precedent in ethereal experimentation. Songs like “Are We Still Married” and “This World Is Not My Home” defined and described heartbreak and real sadness. Collaborations with legendary filmmakers The Brothers Quay resulted in two truly amazing installments in the Stille Nacht series [1991-92] showing up at film festivals and on MTV!!! Alternative Press would later include 1994’s Mouth By Mouth as one of the top 100 albums of the decade.
Stars On ESP, the group’s fourth album, included fully realized dub tracks and a note for note recreation of the Beach Boys “Good Vibrations” (which must be heard to be believed.) HNIA’s appearance in Cameron Crowe’s blockbuster film “Jerry Maguire” brought the band mainstream recognition and helped boost sales of the soundtrack album way past platinum!!!
The group further mutated with releases like Fort Lake  and Someday My Blues Will Cover The Earth , the latter LP a truly astounding achievement. Stylistically dissimilar perhaps from their earlier albums but emotionally the most realized record (until now!) No one can ever guess what direction this group would explore next. They’ve taken more chances than any group currently operating (and Bob Dylan does not count).
Being a Michigan-based band signed to a UK label for 13 years, HNIA parted ways with 4AD in 2002, and HNIA mainstay Warn Defever opened a recording studio in Detroit after years of recording in a basement. Warn has spent the last three years recording and remixing other like-minded artists such as Blanche, Tamion 12 Inch, Saturday Looks Good To Me, Nomo, Low, The Von Bondies, Ida, Yoko Ono and recent demos for Iggy And the Stooges.
Detrola is the first release on new label Silver Mountain Media Group / Sony-BMG. Upcoming releases include: Nomo, Ida, Saturday Looks Good To Me, Field Recordings Of A Real Unicorn, HNIA Live At The Five Hundred Year Old Buddhist Temple In Osaka and A Tribute to Marion Brown.
PAST PRESS HIGHLIGHTS:
“HNIA, whose trademark has been mixing paradise with purgatory, have made an odd little Eden, thats both peaceful and disorienting.” – SPIN
“Defever, deranged svengali, skulks behind the twin singers underpinning the lunacy around him with a stream of motown melodies” – NME
“Stunning intimate electronica.” – MOJO
“This could be the best late night record ever made, a timeless, funky, soulful classic.” – Guardian
“Last Night is at once melancholy, serene and assured” – Pitchfork Media
“His Name Is Alive is one of the most remarkable creations of the pop underground… it will stand the test of time… Like great movie directors, Defever is making a legacy more than anything.” – Dusted Magazine
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