With their first full-length release "All My Friends Are Fighters", The Liquorsmiths seek to expand upon their core ethos - folk rock is the new punk rock. Hailing as they do from the pleasant climes of San Diego, one might have preconceived visions of laid back dreamy beach music, but this three-piece creates songs that are hard-hitting dynamic adventures that can turn in an instant from internal contemplation to cacophonous catharsis and back again with each turn bringing a fresh new layer of surprise to the mix. The 9-song journey proves that there is still plenty of room to find new sounds by mixing the rawness and passion of early 90's alternative and post-punk indie rock with the intimacy and beauty typical of their folk and americana beginnings.
In creating this record, singer/guitarist Drew Thams, drummer Clayton Payne, and keyboardist/percussionist Ryan Fischer convened with producer and Inhesion Records label-head Jeremy Grelle in a large wood cabin on a horse ranch in Morongo Valley, a remote town in the midst of the southeastern California desert. The improvised recording location served a two-fold purpose - to create a relaxing and inspiring environment in which to work at their own pace, and as a naturally beautiful acoustic space that allowed plenty of room to capture the intricacy and power of Payne's drumming and the live energy of the band's trademark dual-percussion grooves.
To match that energy, their producer had Thams run his acoustic guitar through a vintage tube amp as he does on stage and combined that with the pure acoustic tone to create a range of sounds that ably hold up to the visceral weight of his unique percussive strumming style. His passionate vocals weave in and out, floating on top of Fischer's dreamy keyboard lines as he spins tales of life, love, friends and family with a prosaic style all his own.
One of the stated goals of Inhesion Records is to champion the continued relevance of the album as an art form in the digital age, and "All My Friends Are Fighters" makes it clear from beginning to end why they chose The Liquorsmiths as the first artist for their roster. From the thunderstorm bombast of "Let It Come", to the intricately layered beauty of title track "All My Friends Are Fighters", the saloon stomp of "Stay", and the deeply intimate ruminations of "As I Was", the band showcases the depth of range afforded by their vast talents and experience and provides the listener with a journey of peaks and valleys and much detail to be unearthed upon repeated listens.
The Liquorsmiths’ live act is fast becoming the stuff of legend, with inspired spots of improvisation and new surprises always in store. The songs are taken to new heights with every show, playing to the crowd and giving every available ounce of raw emotion. Having already landed their fair share of high profile gigs, sharing the stage with Gill Landry (Old Crow Medicine Show), Stelth Ulvang (The Lumineers), The Silent Comedy, The Wild Reeds, David J (Bauhaus), and countless others, they are looking to branch out further and bring the sounds of “All My Friends Are Fighters” to bigger and better stages across the country as more and more people discover what they mean when they say, “Folk rock is the new punk rock.”