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Steve Barton; Photo Credit: Brandon Schott
Tall Tales and Alibis is the seventh solo album from Steve Barton, founding member of the revered band Translator. It’s being released March 2nd by Sleepless Music. A sprawling tour de force, this release is a triple album filled with Barton’s brand new songs.
The Big Takeover is pleased to premiere a cut off the ambitious and varied album, the retro-folk, psych-rock-tinged “Little Rule Breaker” which spotlights Barton’s rich vocals, ringing, picked acoustic guitar, and his thought-provoking lyrics.
As Barton puts it, “I moved to Portland, Oregon about two years ago. It is an incredibly good place for me to live – as soon as I got settled in, songs just started to pour out of me. Originally, I wanted to release three separate records on the same day. That idea morphed into one triple set. If it were a movie, it would be my technicolor daydream shot in black and white.”
The three albums which make up Tall Tales And Alibis each have their own unique feel. Album One is filled with the more upbeat songs, and the first of three piano songs. Album Two captures a moody vibe – sung in Barton’s lower register. He plays and sings everything on these two records, which he also produced at his studio in Portland.
Album Three is a band LP, recorded in Los Angeles – with a core group specially hand-picked for these sessions. It includes Dave Scheff from Translator on drums, Pete Thomas from Elvis Costello’s group on drums for three of the songs, Nelson Bragg (Brian Wilson band) on percussion, Derrick Anderson (Bangles) holding down the bass, and co-producers of the third album Marvin Etzioni and Willie Aron on guitars, keyboards, and vocals. There is the sonic treat of having had the band play live in the studio for the entire album.
Steve Barton’s previous solo albums include The Boy Who Rode His Bike Around The World, Charm Offensive, Flicker Of Time, Gallery, Projector, and the recent one-off duo album with Translator’s drummer Dave Scheff, New Blue World.
Translator – a band which continues to this day with all four original members – began in Los Angeles in 1979. They relocated to San Francisco in 1980 and released 4 albums on the 415 / Columbia label between 1982 and 1986. The group is best-known for Barton’s song “Everywhere That I’m Not”. Their latest album, Carriage Of Days was released in 2017.
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