Music — February 5, 2013 11:22 — 0 Comments

Sebastian and the Deep Blue

You know that feeing walking through a fair, that warm feeling with all different sorts of folks around, banjos and acoustic guitars, delicious smells in the air, rides, games? That is the feeling of Sebastian and the Deep Blue’s new album Plastic Parts.

Listening to it, I find myself picturing people in red and white carnival outfits with big black mustaches holding hooked canes. I imagine large, spinning, lit-up wheels with people held to them by centrifugal force. I imagine rings thrown toward empty but heavy milk bottles.

My favorite song on the album is “Grown Tired”, a sweet, guitar-picked tune that has vocalist Barry Sebastian singing, “I’m lost. Got lost in the swirl of the crowd. I’ve lost, lost sight in what – and what it’s about.”

The seven-piece is tight despite many moving parts. Kyle Doran plays drums; Martin Strand bass; Sebastian guitar, banjo and lead vocals; Emily Vilbrandt sings background vocals (the two complement one another fantastically both in energy and harmony); Andrew Van Kempen on violin; Colin Pulkrabek and Jacob Herring on trombone; and Douglas Bruey and Justin Cottrell on saxophone. The drums are big, the horns proud, the violin playful and the guitars funky. Think: R.E.M. meets The Pixies.

The 10-song LP is sweet, eclectic, comforting and at times very powerful. “I was living in the ocean. I was swimming with the fish. I was eating all the plankton and they were living off of me!” sings Sebastian on the song “People”. One’s not surprised by the ocean metaphor from a group with “Deep Blue” in the name. Plastic Parts is vast yet somehow wonderfully centered by that feeling of just traveling through the show.

The band plays the Comet Tavern Feb. 16 with The Hoot Hoots.


Jake Uitti is a founding editor of The Monarch Review.

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The answer isn't poetry, but rather language

- Richard Kenney