When he’s not walking across Canada or attempting to break another world record for continuous guitar playing, Rod Standish is writing music. He’s penned three solo albums to date, The Walk, and Illegally Blind Acts I and II. Since late last year, Rod has been quietly working away on a project with his new band, the Outlaws of Sherwood.
The Outlaws are Melody VanSchaik on bass and vocals, Mattie on baritone guitar, and Stevee “Thunder” Campbell on drums. The new album, Gradiations of Drunkitude, features 13 tracks, spanning several musical styles.
“The whole thing’s a rock n’ roll record,” says Standish, “but that’s a pretty broad genre. Some of it is almost metal, some of it is kind of rootsy, some of it is kind of silly, and some of it is danceable even. The coherent theme is the band. We weren’t even switching out guitars. Even if we were playing a metal tune or a reggae tune or a country tune, it’s the same people, the same instruments, 5 minutes later. It’s the band that unifies the record.”
The album was recorded live-off-the-floor by Matt Keighan. “This was the band playing through material in a barn in St. David’s, just pressing record” says Standish. The recording was completed in two days, and then mixed by Keighan and mastered by Ethan Rising.
Several songs include improvised sections by the band. “There is definitely a jam element to some of these tracks,” explains Standish, “where we planned to ‘not plan’ a section of the song and just see what happens – which we were able to do because there’s a synergy there, because it’s a band and everyone’s listening to each other and paying attention to dynamics.”
The album will be released on September 30, at Taps on Queen in Niagara Falls. Matt Keighan’s band, The Ikes, will be joining the Outlaws on the bill. The band then has plans to begin working on a music video with David Green before getting back in the studio. According to Standish, “the next album is already written.”