The Liquorsmiths’ aggressively potent live performance and bleeding-heart writing style stems from a central, keynote theme; folk rock is the new punk rock.
Comprised of Ryan Fischer (keyboards/percussion), Clayton Payne (drums) and led by Drew Thams (vocals/guitar), you’ll hear more of Wilco’s eclectic musical streak in their sound than folk rock pioneers like the Byrds and their distinctive jangle-pop. Among the ingredients that comprise The Liquorsmiths unique flavor include: Thams’ all-out approach born of grunge roots cooked up with a modern outlaw country, post punk hand; Fischer’s east coast jazz meets Nashville rock percussive style and mystically dreamy keyboard textures; and Payne’s progressive rock driven howbeit chivalrously compelling kit performance.
Their sound notoriously arrives as genre consistent, then suddenly becomes something brand new.
And what’s in a name? Well, both Thams and Fischer were working bartenders when they first started the band. Also, the name ‘The Liquorsmiths’ (which was first formed in 2014) is a bit of a raised toast to craft alcohol’s seeming omnipresence in the San Diego area.
In its relatively short time together, the trio has already landed some high profile live gigs, including sharing stages and festival bills with the likes of John C. Reilly, The Marshall Tucker Band, Mike Viola, William Walter, and countless others. Their live act is fast becoming the stuff of legend, with inspired spots of improvisation as Thams plugs his acoustic into a tube amp, and Fischer and Payne bring dual-drumming to a new level. The songs take to new heights with every show, playing to the crowd and giving every available ounce of raw emotion.
The group’s dynamically progressive new album, This Book Belongs To (Inhesion Records), is a whole lot livelier than its bookworm-ish title may suggest. The project’s first single, “Get Well Soon” for instance, chugs like a high-powered freight train charging down the tracks. This new project spans a wide range of emotions that take the listener on a journey filled with songs that connect together like streets on a city map, proving that the art of storytelling and cohesive musical statements can still be made in our post-analog era. Do not be fooled by the 6-song length of this new album, as the band is known for 2 hour sets and has the material to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Jeremy Grelle is not just the band’s producer, but also a fan. He calls their show “a truly captivating live performance. I’ve witnessed on repeated occasions their ability to gradually pull in even the toughest of crowds to share in their heartfelt experiences.”
Friend, you just haven’t experienced the folk beat until you’ve spent a little time with The Liquorsmiths.
The Liquorsmiths’ new album, “All My Friends Are Fighters”, was just released by Inhesion Records.