The Library is on Fire have Released, “Red Flags”, the first single from their upcoming LP, Halcyon and Surrounding Areas, to be released this Spring. “Red Flags”
was written and produced by the band to sound something like a mixtape of various college rock, alternative, goth, and punk music from different 80’s and early 90’s bands. The song itself is about distrust, disappointment, and losing faith – “red flags” when entering new relationships. If you weren’t already familiar with The Library is on Fire, the assumed hypothetical band who wrote this single would have probably been someone who toured with The Pixies or The Church.
The upcoming album from The Library is on Fire, Halcyon and Surrounding Areas has a lo-fi punk / 90’s alt sound that’s accentuated by the genuine and clever songwriting of founding member, Steve Five Panovich; a creative fixture in New York’s numerous art and DIY communities as well as a prolific and exceptional songwriter. The Library is on Fire was formed in 2007 and drew inspiration for their name from a poem written by the famous French World War II poet, René Char. Their intent for Halcyon & Surrounding Areas was to write songs at once disparate and catchy, gloomy yet hopeful, in a manner comparable to finding an old 80’s mixtape of British shoegaze and goth bands stuck between the seats of your older sister’s car in winter.
The recording process for Halcyon & Surrounding Areas began last winter when Five decided to rent a house in the woods where, armed only with his guitar, a four-track recorder, a notebook, and a bedroll, he escaped the chaos and confines of New York to begin working on the album. A month later, Steve returned to Bushwick with a cassette full of demo tracks which the band ultimately decided to record in their studio loft, dubbed TLIOF HQ. Travis Tonn, bass player and recording engineer, tracked the album along with Steve Five. The two began with an all-analog cassette 4-track concept, but integrated digital recording to mix the album. The loft recording space allowed the band time and the freedom to experiment with many inventive techniques such as flipping the cassette tape around to record backwards guitar, re-amping vocals through guitar amps, and running tracks through guitar effects pedals. The band also utilized an array of instruments including cheap thrift-store keyboards and harmonizers, vibraphones, and percussion. Ambient noise in the album reveals the band hanging out, talking, messing up takes, typing, working, etc.
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