Ryder Eaton is a jazz bassist by training, but also has a knack for writing succinct little lo-fi pop songs. His latest release, peach pit, is being released by Drunk With Love Records, home to Gay Angel / Jake Bellissimo. The songs are mostly hushed acoustic tracks, simple guitar and Eaton’s soft vocals delivering lyrics that, as Drunk With Love’s bio describes, “turn the obsolete into the observational, utilizing seemingly mundane thoughts to capture specific moments in time”.
Here’s what Ryder had to say about the album, as well as the brand new song ‘coca-cola purgatory’, peach pit‘s opening track.
Hi Ryder, thanks for speaking with us. How are things at the moment? You’re about to release an EP, Peach Pit. What can people expect from the record?
All is well. [peach pit is] six quiet songs. I’m not sure, I think it’s pretty honest.
As the blurb on the Drunk with Love Records Bandcamp attests, the lyrics on peach pit often comprise of seemingly mundane observations which add up to form an almost poetic sense of pace and time. Was this intentional? And what images do these songs conjure for you upon reflection?
No, that’s not intentional. The point is not to glorify the mundane, in fact none of this is mundane to me. All of it’s very meaningful. It’s hard to imagine hearing peach pit with other ears but I think that the listener hears that I derive meaning from these things. Maybe without understanding why, and that’s totally okay. That might have the effect that you mentioned. For me these songs conjure the moments in which they were conceived, they’re really nothing more than a means to document something that I feel. I know exactly what they’re about. The more interesting question I think, at least for me, is what images they conjure for others.
Your bio introduces you as a jazz bassist, but Peach Pit isn’t exactly a jazz album. Was it fun to make something different and more personal? And did you formal training impact upon these songs in any way?
I hesitate to say that it’s more personal. I’m not sure I’d say it was fun either. Finishing a song is always gratifying but each of them expresses a very particular sentiment. I think “Coca-Cola purgatory” is pretty fun. I don’t know, sometimes it’s really hard. And yes, in the sense that on every song except “hand me downs” I think I only used the bottom four strings of the guitar. I’m not really a guitarist.
Who or what do you consider the main influences on your work (be they musical or otherwise)?
That depends on the era from which a particular song comes, and certainly I’ve got some new ones, but during these last two years, Jeff Tweedy, Angel Olsen, Deerhoof, Chris Weisman. All my friends who make art/music.
How did your relationship with Drunk with Love Records come about?
Jake Bellissimo and I used to go to school together and for a time I lived above him. Sometimes I’d go sing my songs to him. We like each other’s music. Right now we’re both living in Europe and a small tour of Germany was a good excuse for me to get on board officially and put together this first album for drunk with love.
6. What can we expect from you after your début release? Do you have any further releases in the pipeline?
No further releases in the pipeline as far as I can see, but that’s not very far. The way that I write is so sporadic it’s hard to say. I think whatever comes next will probably be of a similar nature; a collection of songs that I have written over a couple years while occupying myself mainly with other things.
7. Finally, could you recommend 4 or 5 artists that you’ve been into lately?
Lately I’ve been checking out Muddy Waters, The First Miles Quintet, some Prokofiev. Mostly I’m checking out french public talk radio.
peach pit is due for release on Drunk With Love Records later this month. You can pre-order it now on lathe-cut 7″ vinyl or as a name-your-price download. Eaton is also joining Jake Bellissimo on a tour of Germany around the time of release. Check out the dates below.